Gutter Magic #1, Source Point Pres

A fast-paced steampunk adventure, Gutter Magic #1 (Source Point Press) does a fantastic job mixing crime and magic with wondrous imagination. The first issue of Gutter Magic establishes a visually compelling world and interesting characters. 

It’s magic and mayhem in Manhattan, as Cinder Byrnes finds the key to a spell that will unleash his potential as a wizard, and grant him the magical powers he’s always wanted. The only problem? He can’t cast a spell to save his life. With the help of his partner in crime, Blacktooth, Cinder sets out across the city, hoping to find the spell’s creator before the necromantic crime lord he stole it from catches up to him.

5) Steampunk!

The first installment touches upon the requirements of the steampunk sub-genre while adding a bunch of fun twists. The stylish look with the streets and taverns are modeled after 19th century industrial references. I did get a chuckle after spotting a bartender with his head on fire.

4) The Writing!

Writer Rich Douek has created two engaging protagonists who fit the mold of slacker criminals. Resembling aspects of a buddy comedy flick, Cinder Byrnes and Blackbooth stand out with their witty banter. With the words in bold, the lettering elevates the suspense when the two misfits end up crossing paths with The Morgue.

3) The Artwork!

Artist Brett Barkley illustrates cool little details to the character designs to add personality. Cinder has goggles on top of his head, which adds to his cockiness. Not meant to be menacing monster, Blackbooth looks like a mischievous and conniving goblin when he drinks. 

2) The Colors!

My favorite part fo the first issue takes place when Blackbooth and Cinder find themselves on the run. In the splash page, notice how the hanging lights reflect the colors of the rainbow. You can spot the differences between the two leads because Blackooth wears a green jacket and Cinder has on a brown trench coat.

1) A Fun Heist!

Thieves find themselves competing against other thieves in Gutter Magic #1. I look forward to finding out what happens next.

Gutter Magic #1 arrives in stores on September 25th, 2019.

By Jorge Solis