Apr 7, 2015

The 40 Years of Comics Project - Day 42: The Clockmaker #1, January 2003


The Clockmaker is an interesting experiment. I rediscovered it this weekend while I was re-organizing the collection, and thought it would make a nice follow-up read to Pope's 100%. Don't ask me yet about the storyline. There is a mountain in Switzerland, and beneath it is a giant clock. Astrid, presumably our main character, returns from the US to take over care of it after her father and brother are murdered by....something.

The introductory issue doesn't feature too much in the way of story, especially with the 4-5 pages of sketchbook work at the back. But it is enough to be intriguing. What's a little different about this first issue is it also introduces us to a new (sort of) format. Though the comic looks like a regular, modern-age sized comic, it actually folds out to twice this size and reads in an almost tabloid-sized format (for which I can find no scans online). While this does intrinsically cut down on the amount of story in the issue, the artistic vistas it opens are truly spectacular. There are two splash pages (in this case, the size of four regular comics) depicting the clockworks that are amazing. The format is a bit clunky in terms of readability, as the crease that ends up being in the center of the book makes turning the pages a bit difficult, and occasionally, from the collector's perspective, harrowing.

Not much more to say at this point. I like Matt Smith's artwork. It's dynamic in and of itself, but also has a pseudo-Mignola feel to it that I enjoy. I won't be reading this one issue by issue, day by day, but will be breaking it up over the course of the next week or so. See you tomorrow.

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