ADVANCED REVIEW: ‘Hidden Society,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 2 minutes

The Hidden Society #1 cover art

There’s an art to a comic miniseries, a balance that must be struck to justify why this story needs to be told in a serial format rather than just releasing a single graphic novel. It’s not enough to have an engaging concept or well designed characters, the title needs to flow and each piece has to leave the audience willing to wait for the next one. Hidden Society a new 4 part creater-owned mini-series from Rafael Scavone and Rafael Albuquerque attempts to do that.

Set in 1970s New York, Hidden Society #1 follows as a wizard, Ulloo, pulls together a rag tag group of characters including a blind girl and her pet demon, a street magician and a cursed bounty hunter, in order to save society from a fearsome primeval force seeking to rid the planet of life. Scavone and Albuquerque are reunited after adapting Neil Gaiman’s A Study in Emerald and are joined by colorist Marcelo Costa and letterer Bernardo Brice to introduce audiences to Hidden Society.

Hidden Society #1 feels almost like a crowd sourced idea of what a title needs to be a hit. In theory this title has all the pieces to make for an engaging story, conspiracies and secrets are always appealing especially after the success of the latest Watchmen adaptation and the characters are diverse and should appeal to a wide range of people. Unfortunately, there’s nothing in The Hidden Society #1 that shows the character’s personalities, unless combative and confused is an entire personality now.

Albuquerque and Scavone’s writing is full of idioms and cliches and says almost nothing. After the first issue the audience knows almost nothing about the threat, the characters, the world or why they should keep reading which is quite a problem when there’s only three issues left.

The art is nice at least. The colours are vibrant which is a nice departure from the dark grittiness we normally see when things are set in 60s or 70s New York. Laura, the blind girl, has an interesting character design not normally seen. A little pudgy around the belly with a double chin it’s nice to see a departure from the normal stick thin or tits and ass only girls. The bounty hunter, Mercy, is of course every take no prisoners I don’t do other people cowboy inspired with a hint of demon girl ever. Rounding out the group is Jadoo, a young amateur magician plucked straight from Now You See Me junior edition.

Hopefully in issue two some plot and character development happens and perhaps some turns of phrase that aren’t plucked from a book of overused idioms. It would be a shame for art this nice to be relegated to such a forgetful story.

Hidden Society #1 will be available where comics are sold on February 26, 2020.

Hidden Society #1
2

TL;DR

Hopefully in issue two some plot and character development happens and perhaps some turns of phrase that aren’t plucked from a book of overused idioms. It would be a shame for art this nice to be relegated to such a forgetful story.