This book actually has a cool concept. Take your average noir detective and make him a mummy. Not just any mummy, though, one who has to keep sacrificing pieces of himself in a spell in order to stay alive. Set him loose on the dark streets, where werewolves and zombies roam, and you have a pretty decent book.
Dick Mummy even has a great inner monologue. It reads like poetry, it really does. He’s also got a magic bug that can track people. He has a quest: to find the Accursed Six, a team of villainous mummies.
All of this has a lot of promise, but sadly the book doesn’t deliver like it should. The main problem is in the execution. As awesome as the inner monologue is, it just destroys the story entirely. Dick Mummy finds a group of werewolves in an alley, along with a young boy who died in the middle of a transition from human to wolf. Dick Mummy tracks down the werewolves and finds zombies instead. Etc. So rest assured, there is a story, but you wouldn’t know it from reading the book.
Every detail of the story that we don’t get from the artwork is given to us through the filter of Dick Mummy. There is no dialogue. There really isn’t any character interaction. For the most part, we’re reading Dick Mummy’s thoughts as he wanders around his city, and when something happens, we’re still lost in his thoughts. Because of this, we’re distanced from the action. A story that should be popping off the pages instead seems bland, the background to a character who is waaaaay too involved with himself. It’s a shame. Writer Peter W. Caton has an interesting idea. If only he knew how to tell it and let actions and characters speak for themselves.
Artist Greg Hiatt is amazing, though. The image of that poor kid, stuck between human and wolf in death, is chilling. The Accursed Six are decadent and vile. The werewolves are formidable and scary. Dick Mummy himself looks pretty cool and awful, what with his rotting face under a classic fedora.
It would seem that this book is a spin-off of another series. It might have been a bit too soon to give him his own title, at least for now. Maybe he’ll fare better in the future. For now, it’s a serviceable book. You’ll enjoy the monologue as a piece on its own. However, as part of a story? It gets in the way too much.
DICK MUMMY #1
Written by Peter W. Caton
Illustrated by Greg Hiatt
Published by Moon Comics