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The name, Bedlam instantly calls images of a mentally
disturbed individual shuffling around the antique halls of an outdated
psychiatric institution, while rattling his chains around like a ghost. Though
that particular Bedlam has been cast aside for a more updated hospital, the
name still evokes chills down our spines. The comic BEDLAM (out now from Image)
is no exception when it comes bringing the same amount of brutality as its
namesake, virtually dripping the pages in violence and eye-popping surprises
while evoking a long-forgotten fear of the demented. The story will follow you
from page one, all the way to the next three books you read.
The story opens up with a birds-eye view of mass slaughter
instigated by a masked madman known only as Madder Red. Unfortunately for him,
his rampage is brought to a sudden and brutal stop, though not before taking
the lives of hundreds of men, women, and children. He is promptly tossed into
the city's Bedlam, home for the mentally ill (AKA Bedlam Hospital). It is here
the story begins to twist and turn on itself, pacing back and forth from Madder
Red and his final attempt at breaking out of the hospital and the man who
Madder Red is under the mask, James Franklin Tyse. Bouncing from Madder Red
moments after the breakout and James's life months after, BEDLAM shines a light
straight into the brain of a mass murderer, often leaving behind more questions
BEDLAM boasts everything a horror fan could want: violence,
gore, and pure insanity. Writer Nick Spencer does a great job of making
Tyse/Madder Red the perfect margarita mix of genius and crazy, while art from
Riley Rossmo is as equally deranged as it is beautiful. Heavy on the angular
lines and strong colors, his work is a perfect complement to the story. Though
it's only the first issue, BEDLAM has the potential to become extremely large
and you're going to want to be on that train when it takes off. It pushes
boundaries and all sense and sensibilities; it's seriously awesome.
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