Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Plunge #1 Review


Take the Plunge!

Writer: Joe Hill
Pencils: Stuart Immonen
Colors: Dave Stewart
Letters: Deron Bennett
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: February 19th, 2020


The final Hill House book (at least for round one) is here! And it starts with a US Coast Guard playing fetch with his dog at Massacre Bay (Attu Island, Alaska). When he throws the stick over the dunes and onto the beach they discover over a dozen dead giant squid on the beach, and then they're hit by a giant tsunami. Yeeeah. I doubt they made it.

Eventually, we find that's probably true because two-thousand people died on the Russian end of that tsunami. While tracking the damage, the US Navy receives a signal from a boat that hasn't been heard from since 1983: the Derleth. Owned by the oil company Rococo International, at the time it was a state-of-the-art ship for underwater mapping and oil exploration. It also had another mission to give the oil company some good PR: endangered species research. With naturalists on board it had solar panels to please the environmentalists, and the tsunami moved the boat so the panels were creating power again, thus the distress signals were being transmitted again. The problem: it's in Russian waters.



Rococo sends David Lacome, VP of Special Projects, to talk to Carpenter Wreck Removal, who have just salvaged nine thousand dildoes. We meet brothers Captain Gage Carpenter, Russel Carpenter, and Clark Carpenter and Lacome tries to hire them to retrieve the bodies and other things from the Derleth. Why would a company like Rococo use a crew like this instead of the big international ones they would normally use? Whelp, like I said, the problem is that the Derleth is in Russian waters. Russia would use force if they're caught, and those companies don't want anything to do with that. 

Moriah Lamb joins the crew; an English marine biologist. We first meet her much earlier in the issue as she's scuba diving in an Aquarium in Anchorage, Alaska, feeding a shark she's raised since it was a baby. We also saw some other things she has to deal with there, and her getting the call that brought her to the Carpenter's ship (now that I think of it, I don't recall seeing a name for their ship). She thinks the dildoes are hilarious and her and the Captain talk a bit about the plan. The two younger brothers kinda crush on her a bit. And then they're off!


The trip happens off panel but they arrive at the Derleth at night. Moriah convinces them to sleep on shore (it's an island made from the crater of a meteor), but the Captain stays on the ship. They sit by a campfire, drink beer, and have a drunken conversation. Then Moriah gets up to go pee in the woods... and makes an unsettling discovery.

Bits and Pieces

This first issue is excellently written all across the board from story, to dialogue, to character development, and with excellent art. You end the issue not only wanting to find out what's happening with this boat but giving a damn about the characters and wanting to see more of them. Unlike the other Hill House comics, it has more of a horror movie feel to it than an indie horror comic feel, too. So if the other Hill House books aren't your thing for whatever reason but you still want some horror, you should give this one a try. It's a near-perfect first issue.


9.5/10

2 comments:

Tony Laplume said...

Immonen's work looks, if anything, even better in this one.

Unknown said...

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