Looking for something a bit different but not totally off the wall? Then give Crimson Cage a read you won’t be disappointed.
The time 1984, the place New Orleans, the backdrop, the Lousiana pro-wrestling circuit. Sound interesting? Well, let’s add in that it is most definitely in the horror genre and did we mention that the plot has a definite Macbeth feel to it. Now you can see this is not your run of the mill issue.
The story – well issue one at least revolves around Chuck Frenzy the headliner for the local Louisiana pro wrestling territory. He is a local celebrity but yearns for the real big time. Then a chance meeting with a trio of supernatural beings gives him the chance but of course, there is a price to pay.
Issue Crimson Cage 1
By AWA Upshot
Published December 2021
Format: Colour Comic
Cover Price $3.99
Writer: John Lees
Artist: Alex Cormack
Cover Artist: Alex Cormack
Variant Cover: Mike Deodato Jr
So Is Crimson Cage The Any Good?
Ascetically this is a very good comic. The premise although far from original is intriguing and the artwork suits the story to a tee. Lees & Cormack have worked together a few times and you can see the chemistry in the way the story flows. The wrestling action is portrayed as well as we have seen it done and they have crammed a lot of character building into this opening issue.
Although Chuck Frenzy & Van Emerald dominate the action there are a few interesting sub-characters who will no doubt play a bigger part as the narrative unfolds.
Wrestling fans will love the trash talk and the dialogue in the panel below will bring back memories of some of those historic epic rivalries. Issue one ends on a nice little cliffhanger, not too dramatic but enough to pique our interest enough to buy issue two.
If there is a downside it is that the horror elements are fairly minimal and the story could easily stand alone without them.
Should You Buy It?
In a word maybe. Although it is in the horror genre there is not a whole lot of it on show. However, that could and probably will change in subsequent issues. If you love pro wrestling then it’s a must and it will also appeal to those looking for a character-driven story. If mainstream superheroes are more your thing then this might not be for you.
This could end up a bit of a cult mini-series, and depending on how it plays out there could be scope here for a follow up after it ends. It also has enough depth to attract an indie film production company. With the streaming services insatiable demand for content, we could see this being optioned up pretty quickly. That is if AWA Studios don’t make it into a movie themselves!
It is already selling for above its original cover price in the secondary market and if you want one it might be wise to grab one now.
We like it and apart from the minor issue of whether the horror adds or not, it’s hard to find fault. Great writing & art complemented by the work of the issue’s unsung creative hero Colorist Ashley Cormack. Her carefully chosen palette of muted colours really helps set the atmosphere.
Overall it’s a solid 8.5/10 from us.