Mike Richardson has hit a home run with “Father’s Day,” which shows no signs of losing momentum with its first issue. As the founder, president, and publisher at Dark Horse Comics, Mr. Richardson also finds time to write and has contributed a variety of work (The Secret, Cut, Atomic Legion). With “Father’s Day,” there’s a palpable sense of purpose to this story of conflict between a daughter and her long estranged father, twenty years of estrangement to be exact. And there’s more to this quirky crime thriller, plenty more.
I have to hand it to Richardson for his astute observations on the dynamics of family. He nails it as he depicts the turmoil that Denise is dealing with as she finally confronts Silas, her father who, for all she knows, just up and left her and her mom high and dry twenty years ago, just as a family was about to begin. She goes to seek out her father and yet, when she finds him, she seems content to just punch him in the gut and give him some harsh news. That’s probably not all she wants from her father and we follow along as hints are made this may be true. As any good parent and child story promises, there will be some fascinating psychology to address. And Richardson delivers with a subtle touch. For instance, the daughter is trying to figure out her father while keeping her distance. He reaches out. She refuses to be touched.
Gabriel Guzmán (Star Wars, Cable, Kull) is just as sensitive to father and daughter dynamics and provides us with heartfelt portrayals. There’s a tenderness in fine juxtaposition with all the conflict that is really compelling. Yes, this is a story that will be relatable to anyone going through family issues. And then we get the heightened sense of reality once we find out that Silas used to work for the mob as was known as the Eastside Butcher. It is Denise’s persistent asking around for her father that has flushed him out and alerted certain powers that be about a loose canon they’ve been looking for. Between Guzmán and Richardson, we have quite a misadventure set in motion.
“Father’s Day” is available as of October 22. For more information, visit our friends at Dark Horse Comics right here.