By Joshua Williamson, Mike Henderson & Adam Guzowski
Nailbiter continues its morbidly entertaining story with its latest arc. As the “devil” makes his mark Georgia, the local authorities believe they have caught the culprit – someone who has familial connections to Buckaroo and its butchers. Of course, Finch is pulled back in to try to close this case, due to his “experience” with the butchers. Back in Oregon, Crane delves further into the depths of Buckaroo and its history…
This issue may seem like it’s full of exposition, but there are some great, important beats to the overall story of Nailbiter. Joshua Williamson sheds some more light on Finch and his life pre-Buckaroo and events that were alluded to finally receive clarification. Also, the fact that Finch seems to be accepting his aggressive and/or violent nature is interesting character development. Williamson makes all the material very digestible in a streamlined, effective fashion. Framing all this around the investigation of the Georgia devil was an excellent move. There may not have been some of the jaw-dropping moments that past issues have had, but there is definitely enough unease and uncertainty laden throughout the book that readers will be satisfied. The cliffhanger is an instant hook for issue #19!
No surprise that Mike Henderson and Adam Guzowski are on point with the art duties, considering how long they have been working on this title. It’s practically a part of their DNA at this point. Mike Henderson is able to present interesting perspective and angles when depicting interrogation scenes. Cinemaphiles who watch crime/noir films to learn how these type of sequences are shot, should literally take a page out of Henderson’s book; I definitely have! The continued dichotomy of light and shadows is a beautiful motif that is executed well. Guzowski highlights the blacks and shady areas, thereby setting the visual tone of the material and making sure the audience is aware of what lurks in every panel…love it!
18 issues in and Nailbiter is still macabre and strong. Fans should absolutely continue reading, especially since the story is expanding and not only in terms of plot. Newcomers should not try to jump into this series blindly, pick up the three trade paperbacks that are available and catch up. The story is so engrossing that they will be quick reads. Everyone should be digging their teeth into this Image title.