Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Scott Tuft
Artist: Attila Futaki
Release Date: 08/2011-02/2012
Another one of my favorite murder mysteries series is Severed. This comic has extreme suspense and keeps a carrot dangling in front of you the whole way. The story is being told by the main character who is much older. We see the ending and get caught up to the present which is a great way to add mystery. A man tells a story about how he lost his arm, he receives a letter in the mail and it brings back memories, of an enemy who haunted him and nearly ruined his childhood. The boy is a fiddler who wants to meet up with his father in Chicago to play with him in concerts. His mother forbids it, however, he runs away and hitches on a train.
Our main protagonist runs into many problems but befriends a girl named Sam who disguises herself as a boy to keep pervs away from her. They make it through thick and thin, but the murder part comes in as a strange cannibalistic man with razor-sharp teeth (this is never explained, nothing supernatural here, maybe he sharpened them?) and he loves stalking children. He convinces the children to let him help them get back to Mississippi (as his father mysteriously isn’t in Chicago and went back) only to end up with a twist ending that I won’t spoil.
The suspense is in the fact that this man is disguised as someone who wants to help the children, but the reader knows who he really is. There are several close calls and scenes that lead you to think he’s about to kill the children when the suspense is released. It keeps the pages turning and this is key in comics like these. The art style is great and is reminiscent of a 1940’s industrial America which is great to look at.
The comic is sinister, sick, twisted, and any other word that can describe a cannibalistic murderer who stalks children. The series closes with a great finale and I felt like there were a balanced beginning middle and end. The sensitive subject matter makes this a very raw and real comic that can actually happen even to this day. It’s an eye-opener and something that will keep you thinking about all day long.