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Baddeley, Kyle – Silent V #5


Silent V #5

Oh Silent V, if only you would put any kind of a synopsis at the start of the book. I was going to read the previous issues of this series before reviewing this one, but after looking at the mess of my room I’ve changed that and decided that I’m going to do that before I review #6. As it does appear to be heading towards a conclusion of sorts, that probably makes more sense anyway. Or I could write clearer reviews so that I’d be able to get myself caught up on past issues more easily, but let’s not get crazy here. This issue maintains the pattern started in the last issue of being more linear than earlier issues, which is always helpful. This time around the Lord (of some sort) has been born. He takes his faithful disciple and goes into the future to look for a bizarre living doll of some kind that is currently under construction. And, really, that’s pretty much it. The Lord and his servant have some funny conversations, the doll thing reaches completion, we get a mystifying last page (good to see that Kyle isn’t losing his touch in that regard) and that’s it for the issue. Well, there is also another story that takes up the second half of the book, it’s just that it isn’t related to the main storyline in any way. It’s about two guys gorging themselves on all the food in the room until all they’re left with are the dishes, so they gorge themselves on that. And you know what happens after you have a giant meal, right? Well, things in the story only get uglier than there. It’s a funny enough silent story, but Kyle asks on the back page if people think this is a good idea, and I have give my usual equivocal answer: sure, it’s a fine story, but what about the opus that you’ve been working on? Better to wrap that up first, then put out an issue of all the unrelated stories that you may have floating around. But I also want everything right now, so what do I know. Don’t go into this one blind, but if you’re read the rest of this series it doesn’t make any sense to stop now, does it? $3 (?)

Baddeley, Kyle – Silent V #4


Silent V #4

Could it be? Is this the missing Silent V origin story? Well, sort of. The storytelling in this one is damned near linear, which is shocking in itself after the first three issues. The first half of the comic (roughly) deals with the early years of our hero and his proficiency in killing aliens. I’m still not entirely clear on WHY he hates aliens so much, although it seems to be basically because his scientist father didn’t have time for him as a kid, so he killed aliens in brutal fashion to pass the time. Chances are I’m missing some nuance there. The second half has a human sacrifice gone wrong (actually an intended dingo sacrifice) and the escaped dingo learning about the god he was supposed to be sacrificed to. See, I was able to more or less summarize this issue coherently! This also leads me to an inescapable conclusion: I’m going to have to read all of these again when #5 comes out, theoretically by the end of the summer. I have a sneaking suspicion that some of the things that seemed like nonsense before (delightful nonsense though, no doubt about it) are going to start coming together. If not, well, then Kyle hasn’t been doing his job properly. Still, there’s just enough sense to all of this that I can see bits and pieces of a master plan poking through the surface. You guys should buy some of his comics to motivate him to get #5 out on time. Sure, it helps me out, but this comic should be seen by the comic reading world at large. $2 (?)

Baddeley, Kyle – Silent V #3


Silent V #3

Either this comic is starting to make sense or my brain is officially adapting to the madness.  In most cases I’m all for a story coming together and starting to make sense, but this time around I think I prefer the chaos. Not that it would be a bad thing to know what the hell has been happening for the last couple of issues, but the ride has been such a blast that I’m in no hurry for “logic” to make a mess of everything.  Anyway, this time around we see a baby slacking on its first day, the dog thing chats with his almost identical twin and explains a bit of what he does all day (hint: it doesn’t involve smoking pot), our hero gets a visit from a tall teddy bear holding an egg, and what the fuck just happened there at the end?  Let me look again… yep, that’s what I thought. Huh. This is either going to be a mess of a graphic novel if it’s all collected together or it’s going to be brilliant; I don’t see much room for space in between. I also love how, even in a mostly “straight” story like this, we still get moments of genuine insanity like our hero nailing fish to a wall for no apparent reason. Then, just in case that wasn’t enough, we subtly learn that the fish are watching the proceedings. Sweet Jesus, buy these books. It’s difficult with most comics to talk about them just enough to get people interested without giving too much away, in this case it’s damned near impossible and these reviews would be much easier to write if I knew that each and every one of you had already read the comics. I’m not sure of the price, probably a couple of bucks, but whatever it is you should just bite the bullet and get it. Unless you like your comics all linear and sensible, in which case I don’t know why you’re hanging around here anyway.

Baddeley, Kyle – Silent V #2


Silent V #2

There’s a fine line between playing fast and loose with your storyline to enhance it and make it wonderful and just throwing a bunch of shit against the wall and hoping something sticks.  I wish I could tell you exactly where that line was, as it would save a lot of creative types some trouble, but I have no idea.  Wherever that line is, Kyle has found it and is currently dancing a happy jig all over it.  I have very little idea what’s going on in the grand scheme of things in “Silent V,” and I really couldn’t care less.  This is a whole pile of inspired brilliance, so much so that I had to  sample two images from the book.  Well, nobody made me sample two pages, but I would have sampled the whole thing if I thought that was fair.  OK, let me try to sum up the story just a bit (this ought to be good.) A baby is dropped off to be a new recruit of some kind (but the “dropping off” was maybe a bit too literal), Doug fights off some goblins in the clock tower, we travel 700 years back in time for no discernible reason, Burrd Flappy gets what’s coming to him, and that “to be continued” page was a thing of sheer awesomeness.  Generally with this type of book I hold a hope of eventually going back and re-reading the series to make some sense out of it, but this time around I’m frankly rooting for chaos to win out.  Read it, love it, scratch your head out of sheer delighted confusion. $2 (?)

Baddeley, Kyle – Silent V #1


Silent V #1

Is it bad if I’m hoping that something is an undeclared 24 hour comic? That’s not to say a thing either way about the story, but these are such simple drawings with such nonexistent backgrounds that this guy could put together a monthly series in no time if he wanted to.  As for the story, well, wow.  I need to narrow that down a bit, so how about “damn”? In a good way?  OK, let me try again.  This is the story of a man who has been protecting the Earth (or at least something very close to this planet) from alien invasion since he was a baby.  Literally, as he would throw homemade molotov cocktails at the ships while sucking a pacifier.  He seems to be friends with, or at least work professionally alongside, a bird who has apparently faked his own death.  The dingos are not interested in helping against the invasion, the dead have started to rise, and goblins are dancing naked. Meanwhile, there are other babies who are being cared for by a woman who probably should get a different job (and the babies seem to be highly explosive when dropped from a great height) and a member of the invasion may yet win the whole thing for the good guys.  It’s a delightful mess of a story, in other words, and I chuckled in awe of the guy behind it more than a few times.  I can only hope this really is only the first issue and there’s more to come, as this was a blast.  While the art may lean a bit on the simple side, it gets the point across and that, more than anything, gives me hope that Kyle could start cranking these out if there was enough of an outcry.  Like, say, the outcry caused be the good comic loving people of this site sending him some orders for the first issue?  Couldn’t hurt, anyway.  No price listed, but a buck or two is probably about right…