Plunge Graphic Novel Review.

Collecting issues 1-6. Joe Hill, writer. Stuart Immonen, artist. Dave Stewart, colorist. Deron Bennett, letterer. Jeremy Wilson, collection cover artist. From DC Comics Black Label and Hill House Comics.

I’ve been reading all of the Hill House Comics over the last few months (and that will be spinning off into more of Joe Hill’s works from other publishers) and have one more collection after this volume. Plunge tells a story that is more enjoyable the less known. I knew it involved a shipwreck and that was about it. If you want to know more, and I’ll over simplify it, a decades old shipwreck begins sending out a distress signal. A salvage crew along with some interesting additions who have their own scientific and financial interests in mind head to the Arctic to investigate the 40 year old wreckage. And then so much happens!

If it’s scary, chances are it’s in here. Plus so much more. There are ideas that are so terrifyingly original I feared discussing them in public for fear these thoughts would land me in an institution. No matter where you think this story is going, you’re wrong. Every single change of direction hit me off course like the original storm at the center of this story. Now I’ve read multiple works from the mind of Joe Hill and nothing in that experience prepared me for what was in Plunge.

I could see Basketful of Heads as a movie. Low Low Woods and Dollhouse Family as mini series. But Plunge? I don’t know. The story is so dense it could be a two hours and change movie focusing on the scariest parts of the story. Though it can also become a multi season show exploring the interactions between everyone at the start of the story and everyone who comes into the tale as it progresses. Almost like Lost in the cold, and with an ending known from the beginning.

The numbers, the ship, the people – everything on the cover art makes sense for the story, but that is not the interior art. Immonen makes the good people brighter and the bad people darker. There’s a frosty glow over everything. Beauty within all of the danger. Isolation within company.

The mystery builds so well with a point of no return. I read the first issue and was able to set the book down in order to do other things. Once I picked it back up though, Plunge stayed in my hands until I was finished. A great first issue ending to hook interest but then issue 2 and beyond dig that hook deeper in. Fight it if you want, but that only makes things worse.

If you’re into monsters from an older time and a haunting mystery that doesn’t unravel in any pleasant way, Plunge is a must for horror and comic fans.

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