24 October 2012

Faster than a DC Bullet: The Sandman Spin-Offs, Part XXII: The Dead Boy Detectives

Comic digest, 124 pages
Published 2005
Borrowed from the library
Read October 2012
The Dead Boy Detectives
by Jill Thompson

The Dead Boy Detectives is the second solo outing for the two ghosts who previously appeared in The Sandman Presents: The Dead Boy Detectives-- yeah, that's not confusing at all. This volume sees Jill Thompson (of The Little Endless Storybook fame) take over for Ed Brubaker and Bryan Talbot, and convert the whole thing into a manga style. While Thompson's previous attempt at the manga-conversion in At Death's Door didn't really work for me, I ended up enjoying this one a lot. 

The premise of two ghosts who only other kids can see is played for laughs, much as it ought to be I think, and this is only heightened by the manga-style hijinks: Charles and Edmund have to go undercover at an elite all-girl boarding school in Chicago to find a missing student. Wackiness is basically the order of the day, and that's just fine. Their fish-out-of-water status is utilized more than it was in Brubaker's story. 

Thompson's art is also suitably cute, with the manga styling put to good use. Though I had difficulty distinguishing the female students from each other sometimes, I typically enjoyed it. I'd read more adventures of the Dead Boy Detectives if she wrote them, though after seven years that seems a bit unlikely.

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