DEPARTURE is another comic that has recently intrigued me with its low-key approach. It is one of those comics that creeps up on you, panel by panel. It’s not an easy story to tell. It begins with the domestic violence that two brothers must endure at the hands of their father growing up in the backwaters of Louisiana. This puts their mother in great harm. And it’s only a matter of time before Michael and Rafe must confront the situation. Written by Jeane Wong, and drawn by Roy Stewart, this comic can be considered a stand-alone, and also serves as a prequel and back story to a television pilot Wong has written.
Jeane Wong’s script is lean with the right hints of pathos. Roy Stewart’s artwork neatly mirrors the style and mood of the script. Stewart’s spare linework keeps the vibe somber and tense. Among Jeane Wong’s work, she wrote for “The Vampire Diaries” for D.C. Comics. Among Roy Stewart’s work, he did the artwork for the graphic novel, “Aleister Crowley: Wandering the Waste.”
The issue I picked up proves to be a good teaser for a larger work. Apparently, since this 16-page edition first came out in 2015, a new 32-page edition is now available at Amazon and you can check it out right here. From the description, I can tell that this latest version expands upon the initial opener. Beyond this introductory story is a larger work which involves an alternate America where segregation still exists. That is Wong’s TV pilot. It’s interesting how, once a work is out there in the world, it takes on a life of its own. So, if you pick this comic up, unaware of a bigger story down the road, you’ll still find much to like. On the strength of this initial effort, I look forward to more work from both Wong and Stewart.