REVIEW: ‘Bog Bodies,’ Original Graphic Novel

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Bog Bodies ogn cover

Bog Bodies is published by Image Comics. It is written by Declan Shavley and illustrated by Gavin Fullerton, with colors by Rebecca Nalty and lettered by Clayton Cowles. In the original graphic novel, Bog Bodies, young Irish gangster Killian gets a knock at his door from his fellow gangster Keano. Keano is there to ask for some help with a job. Little does Killian know he has been set up for a previously botched job. Now on the run through a bog in the Dublin mountains, Killian must avoid death at the hands of former accomplices. While running through the bog he stumbles upon a woman named “Neev,” who appears to have had a rough night of her own. Together, they try to find their way out of the bog and to safety.

Declan Shalvey tells a great suspenseful story. The dialogue really kept the story moving from the beginning to the end. From the page where Killian is sitting at home playing video games to the drive out to the bog while Keano curses every other word, the dialogue felt real and flowed well. You could feel the emotion, as Killian tries to do a good deed for Neev, even though he has led a less than honorable life as a gangster. You can sense the desperation as Killian tries to find his way out of the woods and through the bogland. And ultimately you can sense the regret for some of the choices that Killian made throughout his life that led him up to that point.

Bog Bodies ogn panel

Gavin Fullerton’s artwork can capture emotion just as well as Shalvey’s dialogue. You can see on Keano’s face that he does not truly want to kill Killian when he is about to shoot but misses intentionally. You see the sorrow on Killian’s face when he looks at his cellphone and sees the missed calls from his mother. You can also tell that Gerry (Keano’s partner in crime) has a mean streak in him and is quite impatient. He has a sinister smile and it’s a face you never want looking at you if you are on the wrong end of a gun barrel.

I personally like the splash page (on page 5) where the reader can only see the headlights of Keano’s car, the country in the background and just a hint of hills and the moon in all the darkness. It gives you a sense of how dark it is and how far they are from the city. Fullerton’s artwork combined with Rebecca Nalty’s colors sets the perfect tone for Bog Bodies. Nalty uses a white, gray, and blue color palette on the faces and bodies of the characters as they make their way across of the bogland, and it gives you the sense of actually seeing what they see in the darkness with only what little light is available from the gloomy black skies.

Overall, I loved Bog Bodies. Well done by the entire creative team. It was a suspenseful tale about regret and trying too late do something right. It is a raw emotional story with great pacing and art throughout. When I finished reading it the word that came to mind, was “eerie.” It sent a chill up my spine. It is one of the best graphic novels I have read in a long time.

Bog Bodies is available where comics are sold.


Bog Bodies Graphic Novel
5

TL;DR

Overall, I loved Bog Bodies. Well done by the entire creative team. It was a suspenseful tale about regret and trying too late do something right. It is a raw emotional story with great pacing and art throughout. When I finished reading it the word that came to mind, was “eerie.” It sent a chill up my spine. It is one of the best graphic novels I have read in a long time