This week, the British weather took a turn for the chilly as we Pipedreamers were gifted a good bit of snow. As a result, it would be remiss of us to not let this weather influence our next review as we take a look at the first three issues of Nick Goode and Harry Hughes’ Snow: The Dawn, a new superhero book set in a future London setting. Is this a new sleeper hit of a comic or will it be left out in the cold?
Publisher: Goode & Hughes Comics
Writer: Nick Goode
Artist: Harry Hughes
Price: £1.49-£1.99 per issue on ComiXology
In 2079, the world continues to survive after the devastation of a shock escalation in climate change. For the UK, this means a loss of nearly half its land mass and the city of London cut off and broken up into ten distinct ‘boroughs’. However, for James Snow, a staff member for the parliamentary councilman who runs the borough of Islington, this is just another day as he works tirelessly to make the world a better place. However, Snow’s normal life takes a dramatic turn when, on his way home one night, he stumbles upon a gang of highly trained thugs in the midst of a robbery, resulting in him being injected with an unknown substance. Now, recovering from this event, Snow discovers that injection has given him remarkable abilities, abilities which may just come in handy when he finds himself unwittingly entangled in a criminal conspiracy.
With Snow, Nick Goode has produced quite an enjoyable story which, while feeling very superhero-esque, has a refreshing slant on the stereotypical superhero origin trope. In fact, Goode has seemingly infused this series with a vibe which is very much that of a British crime thriller, as evidenced, in part, with many of the hoodlums and criminals littered through the issues. The writing isn’t perfect as the dialogue feels a little too wordy at times and other moments feel a little rushed, but the series is an increasingly engrossing one thanks to the interesting lead character and the ever deeper conspiracy he finds himself in.
Harry Hughes also does well with this series, matching the story’s tone perfectly with a quintessentially British, almost classic 2000AD look to it. This is more apparent in the later issues as issue 1 appears in some very retro colours before the switch to black and white for the later two instalments. Of course, for back to back reading, this transfer from colour to monochrome is a little bit jarring in its inconsistency but this doesn’t dissuade from the quality of both art styles. With issue 1, the art has some really rough edges but this gives it a nice personality that is enhanced by the loud colours. However, the following two issues seem to be where the art excels with the pencils looking smoother and fitting well with the monochrome, giving it a Sean Gordon Murphy look. This is best shown early in issue 2 with the reveal of the villains and later in issue 3 when Snow takes a more heroic stance.
While appearing to be a bit rough around the edges, Snow-The Dawn is a really entertaining book which may have been vastly underrated. With a gripping story and story really crime-infused artwork, this is a series which deserves more recognition and praise and needs to be read by those Brubaker/Philips fans or maybe someone wanting to move from Superheroes to Crime, where this is a good middle ground.