Last fall during a period when I was buying two or three graphic novels per week, Amazon was quite insistent about recommending me all sorts of additional such novels outside the serieses I’d been focusing on, many of which looked either terribly uninteresting or not quite interesting enough to roll with sans recommendation by actual people. And then there were the three volumes of Hack/Slash, in which a scantily clad chick is taking on an assembled mass of movie murderers. That, I could get behind sight-unseen.
And now, a goodly long time later, I’ve read the one I bought, First Cut. And, well, there’s no denying that it suffered from my unreasonable expectations. The backstory felt both rushed and a little bit shoddy, and the initial storyline took a while for me to warm up to. But as the second and third issues unfolded (there are only three in this first volume, plus a short illustrated Christmas poem and a wealth of sketches and other source material), I was won over.
The biggest part of that conversion, aside from the gratuitous sexuality and violence, was due to the growth of partners Cassie Hack and Vlad. In a world where a teenaged girl and a hulking, slightly deformed guy in a gas mask can wander the country in search of serial killers (that is, folks who murder a lot of people) and slashers (who are basically the same, only they’re a lot more unkillable, and often dead in the first place; the kind you’d expect to see in a horror movie), it’s hard to credit that real character development could occur over the course of three brief stories. And yet, they managed it pretty handily. Credit where it’s due, this could possibly turn into a pretty good series. Downside: I’m not sure where to find the second volume, so it may be a while before I return to this.