Story: Curt Pires
Art (Pages 1-22): Antonio Fuso
Art (Pages 23-36): Pierluigi Minotti
Colour Art: Lee Loughridge
Letter Art: Micah Myers
Publisher: ComiXology Originals

Lost Falls #1 immediately got my attention as I’ve been a fan of Curt Pires’ other ComiXology Originals series Youth. However, whilst I have a good understanding of the latter, Lost Falls #1 has left me feeling quite… lost. I’m just hoping that’s the intention of this first issue.

To begin with, the issue follows Daniel Pynchon, a man who’s just woken up on the outskirts of the titular Lost Falls, with no idea how he got there (happens to the best of us amirite?). I say ‘to begin with’ but technically the first page is a bit of David Lynch style surrealism before we get to Daniel. After a few minutes spent in a conveniently located motel, Daniel sets out down the street, following the blonde girl from his opening dream sequence, only to be hit over the head and knocked out.

Whilst pursuing the mysterious blonde girl, Daniel crosses paths with a group of teenagers on their way to meet with a creepy drug dealer. There are four teenagers, and the ones with names are Drake and Sam. I must admit it annoyed me to no end that Drake’s girlfriend, who gets more page time than the others, isn’t given a name. What’s more, there’s also a man with glowing eyes killing three people in a petrol station and holding another hostage, and strange figures appearing from the waterfall in town and seemingly possessing people who have taken a drug, cut with “something from the falls”, such as Drake who was unlucky enough to be walking by at the exact wrong time.

I think both Antonio Fuso and Pierluigi Minotti’s art styles suit the tone of the book, however, I’m not sure if the collaboration between the two works. As there are multiple narratives I would’ve been happy to see each artist take ownership of specific characters and stories, but the hard divide at 22 pages into the issue feels disjointed. For example, the Sheriff’s daughter/Drake’s girlfriend is completely unrecognisable and even changes hair colour between appearances.

Speaking of colouring, Lee Loughridge’s colours suit the story being told, with the kind of muted colour palette I’d expect, though I think more attention to detail would help to improve the change between artists.

I’m largely a fan of Micah Myers’ lettering and whilst I like the font used in the surreal opening sequence, I did struggle to read the white lettering on a black background. Aside from that specific panel, I think his speech and occasional sound effects are great throughout.

To return to my confusion all the way back in the first paragraph: I’m not a stranger to comics being baffling at times and when the blurb tells me there’s a mystery afoot, I almost expect to be. Though in the case of Lost Falls I couldn’t help but feel like there was just a bit too much going on. I’m sure that through the course of the coming issues the various threads will be weaved together and we’ll get a better understanding of what’s happening in reality, however, this first issue has left me pretty perplexed. I’m all for the unreal elements of the story and the alternating perspectives of the town of Lost Falls, but I feel like a lot happened in this issue and not entirely in a way that’s encouraging for readers to return for more. Perhaps this is something that will be remedied in the collected edition.

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