The One Hand #1
Neo Novena detective ARI NASSER is about to retire with an enviable record, until a brutal murder occurs, bearing all the hallmarks of the "One Hand Killer"…which should be impossible since Ari already put him away not once but twice in the years before.
What follows is a deadly cat-and-mouse game as Ari pursues his quarry down the rain-soaked streets of Neo Novena. Ari will stop at nothing to unravel the secrets and ciphers of this case but each revelation only leads further into the dark heart of his future-metropolis and Ari's own beleaguered soul.
The One Hand #1 has all of the pieces that make a great neo-noir story: a detective on the verge of retirement, a visually striking city with near-constant rain, and a horrific crime. The new series kicks off with a fantastic debut issue that gives readers just enough to be completely hooked. Written by Ram V., illustrated by Laurence Campbell, colored by Lee Loughridge, lettered by Aditya Bidikar, with designs by Tom Muller, The One Hand follows Detective Ari Nasser as he postpones his retirement to take on one more case; a case he has already solved twice before. Issue #1 lays down a strong foundation and puts a lot of trust in readers. There are enough familiar concepts and tropes of the genre at play that Ram V. doesn’t have to do a lot of setup. Laurence Campbell and Lee Loughridge deliver atmospheric and strong film noir-inspired visuals that fill in any gaps left by V. Neo Novena may be new to readers, but the creative team assures that they won’t be lost.
Aditya Bidikar brings the narrative together with their lettering. The issue isn’t text-heavy and there aren’t a lot of complicated setups but the issue does move pretty quickly with various settings in Neo Novena. It is rare for mainstream comics to include the names of the creative team outside of the writer and artists, so it is a welcomed change to see both Aditya Bidikar and Tom Muller listed on the cover. Muller’s was especially interesting since he is credited as a designer. The designs that the One Hand Killer leaves at the crime scene will play an important role in the series and their integration into the actual design of the issue is nicely done and a wonderful touch. This first issue gives readers just enough information about Detective Nasser to follow along but there aren’t any judgments to be made just yet. Readers don’t necessarily understand his thought process yet but they do see his detective skills in action late in the issue after first visiting the crime scene. The event that leads to Nasser’s revelation doesn’t feel forced but it does add intrigue to the character and fleshes out what kind of world Neo Novena occupies. Everything about this issue just works and builds up to the climax with smart writing paired with masterful art.
The One Hand #1 is a fantastic first issue from start to finish. The creative team is doing something great here and readers should be excited. Readers may notice that there is a companion series that will coincide with The One Hand. The Six Fingers will release later this month, written by Dan Watters and art by Sumit Kumar with Lee Loughridge, Aditya Bidikar, and Tom Muller continuing from The One Hand. Both writers are two of the best writers working in comics today, so this feels pretty special. Readers are in for something great.
The One Hand #1: A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall
- Writing - 9/109/10
- Storyline - 9/109/10
- Art - 9/109/10
- Color - 9/109/10
- Cover Art - 9/109/10
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