Friday, January 5, 2018

Imaginary Fiends #1 Review and ***SPOILERS***

Polly, I'm Rotten To The Core

Written by: Tim Seeley
Art by: Stephen Molnar, Quinton Winter, and Carlos M. Mangual
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: November 22, 2017

I wasn't entirely sure what to expect from this book. Tim Seeley isn't one of my favorite writers out there, but he isn't my least favorite either. The solicits seemed interesting, but I wasn't entirely sure whether or not that fun would follow through to the book itself or not. So let's call those mixed feelings. But let's jump right in and see if this book surprises me and is awesome, or if it falls flat.

Explain It!

We start out with Cameron Calle standing around with his friends smoking on the grass. At the beginning, Cameron is just an awkward 14-year-old, worried about how to impress girls more than anything else. Cameron is happy to get away from his little sister Brinke for a little while, but then she comes stumbling out of the woods, covered in blood. She was stabbed 17 times by her best friend Melba Li, but the only words she could get out were "Polly Peachpit."

Fast forward 6 years, and Melba is turning 18 in a juvenile correctional facility, about to be transferred to a real jail for at least 10 more years for attempted first-degree murder. After some hazing from the other girls in the shower, Melba goes to talk to her one friend, Alice Prieto. Melba used to draw a lot, but now she just likes to color, and she is very proud of the fact that she always stays inside the lines. Alice has Melba blow out a birthday candle and make a wish, then tells her that she doesn't believe that Melba did it.

Melba has to get around quick because she has a visitor: Special Agent Virgil Crockett of the FBI, IMP Division. Agent Crockett shows Melba a video of a little girl eating a popsicle while her brother swings in the background and asks her what she sees. She thinks it's just another test to see if she's crazy or evil, but Crockett tells her that he doesn't think she's crazy, evil, or that she did it. Melba tells him that she sees a sea monster wearing a cowboy hat riding a tricycle. No, I'm not making that up. Crockett informs her that this sea monster is named Gerald Flappyfins, but they call him Marshall Loch.

Crockett then goes on to tell her all about these Interdimensional Mental Parasites, or IMPs. They exist in another dimension and come through to feed on the affection, attention, and loyalty of people, usually kids or the mentally unstable. He says that these IMPs are normally harmless, basically just imaginary friends giving children companionship, and they go away when the kid grows out of it. But some get stronger and eventually can affect the physical world. Crockett tells her that they believe she was an advanced host to an IMP, and that if she comes and helps out the IMP division, then she will be free of her sentence. There is a catch, though: they also need Polly Peachpit.

Back in her room, Melba is reminiscing on the last time she talked to Polly Peachpit, 6 years ago with Brinke. In the middle of the recital to summon her, Brinke interrupted to talk about the upcoming school year and they forgot to give Polly something. Brinke feared something other than Polly, and Polly came for them and made Melba stab Brinke. Now, in her room, Melba summons Polly again. But instead of letting Polly walk all over her again, this time Melba takes charge. She holds a knife up to her wrist and threatens to kill herself and cut off Polly's food source if Polly doesn't cooperate.

A few weeks later, Polly and Melba are working with Crockett to investigate IMP cases for the FBI. But Melba isn't the only one with an IMP still feeding on them. In Minnesota, Cameron Calle sits in his home and summons Charlie Chokecherry. Charlie tells Cameron that Polly has returned, then shatters the mirror as a reminder that Cameron is merely a vessel for revenge.

Well, I'm not the biggest fan of Tim Seeley, but I had a lot of fun with this book. I thought the art looked great, especially for this type of story, and that story is a great mix of zany fun and a slight creep factor. I'm stoked to continue this series and see if the quality stays this high.

Bits and Pieces:

This book is a ton of fun! Tim Seeley has crafted wacky story that adds a creepy, suspensful element as well. There is a great mix of goofy characters and cool concepts about the imaginary friends of children. Combine that with great art and coloring, and you've got yourself a winner.


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