Treading the boards via TPub (home of Tortured Life, Twisted Dark and Turncoat), writer Neil Gibson is taking a bow with Theatrics webcomic, about an actor who uses his talent to reinvent himself after a life changing attack. But will Theatrics belong on the stage with TPub’s other fantastic titles, or will it be in need of an early curtain close?
Publisher: T Publishing
Writer: Neil Gibson
Artist: Leonardo Gonzales (Pencils/Inker), Jan Wijngaard (Colorist), Jim Campbell (Letterer)
Price: Free to read at TPub.co.uk (New pages daily)
Our rating: [star rating=”5″]
Set in depression era America, Theatrics tells the story of Rudy Jones, a handsome up and coming actor who, after a night of drinking and celebrating, gets into a fight with a gang of hoodlums. A fight which ends when Rudy takes a lead pipe to the face. With the loss of his looks, and the potential end of his career, Rudy must start again and reinvent himself into something else which suits his new face. All the while, he has to learn to live with his new appearance and accept his new status quo.
Theatrics is an incredible comic series, feeling seriously captivating from the start. Neil Gibson has crafted a truly immersive and deeply intriguing tale, made all the more interesting with his creation of an engaging lead character. Rudy Jones comes across as a very multi-layered character who is by no means perfect. His arrogance and entitlement are shown when he seeks new acting jobs, while we see flashes of his anger throughout the series, all of which feels very honest. Because of this, Gibson tends to focus less on action and more on Rudy’s character development and relationships, such as with frustrated friend Sam and even the heartbreaking scene with [SPOILER], which tugs at more than a few heartstrings due to its perfect execution. Of course, Gibson shows his talent not just in his writing but also in holding back, with pages devoted to Rudy fighting where he keeps narrative to a minimum and allowing the art team to tell the story.
And what art to use as Theatrics really brings out the big guns when it comes to its visuals. With some beautiful sharp crisp lines, Leonardo Gonazales provides truly mesmerizing panels which just jump out of the page at you. What’s more incredible though is that Gonzales is no one-trick pony as he consistently maintains this breathtaking style which is made even better (if that is even possible) by the Greg Hinkle-like colour scheme employed by Jan Wijngaard. Together they produce page after page of masterpiece such as an eye-popping visual of Rudy’s face on the side of a bottle, his face post attack, tears for his lost life and many more besides. Thanks to the visuals, Theatrics is quite literally a webcomic of great art moments. The curtain has been raised on a masterpiece so get your tickets and enjoy the show.