Cutter #3

by Forrest.H on October 16, 2014

Cutter 3 Review
A cold cut of pure tension and terror 

Writers: Robert Napton & Seamus Kevin Fahey

Artist: Christian DiBari
Publisher: Top Cow / Image

Cutter 3 ups the intrigue and tension but misses out on the solid action scenes of the previous issue.

Napton and Fahey do a great job of seperating this story from the Carrie-esque tone of the previous 2 issues this time around and it really pays off as the mystery of Emily's ressurecction and her inveitable revenge unfold. These two are doing a great job of creating actually dynamic characters. Jeremy, even as "a boy nextdoor" type which he without a doubt is, is becoming more and more militant and paranoid as the stakes of this book get higher and higher. The sheriff of this besieged and secretive town finally opens up when he admits that he can't handle all of the pressures and horrors of the Cutter investigation himself. Finally, Emily, who is seen for the first time here in all her shaking presence, is humanized for the first time really when her diary is revealed (even if it does read as a to-do list of murder). When you're doing a cliche type story like this, it only works if you're doing it well, and Fahey and Napton certainly are doing this well, establishing themselves as masters of horrorific mystery, not just gore.

DiBari's art is certainly a pressence here but less-so than the previous issues as there's little interesting scenes for him to actually create suspense with like he is so good at. This time around, the black and white style is noticeable again, the shading and tones of the pages are wonderfully established but the "rushed" feel is detracting in a way that doesn't contribute to the overall tension that this book usually hits perfectly. It's not to say that the art is bad, it's simply that the scripting in this issue doesn't lend to DiBari's styles. The first panel, the trophy room and other moments are still spectacular examples of DiBari's understanding of gruesome, taunt, tension and suspense and the cover art is again, a strong, powerful portrait of Emily's impending revenge.

DiBari, Fahey and Napton have established themselves as masters of the short horror story here. Like visual Stephen King, this story is an unraveling and deeply terrifying portrayal of a broken town whose revelation is at hand. When the art doesn't work, the story does and vice versa. This issue isn't perfect but, it is a strong lead into the final issue which I have high hopes for. Viva La October, Viva La Cutter. 


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