At first glance, Weird Detective #1 is about a snarky, confident and suave detective named Sebastian Greene who is respected within his crime unit and known for his successful yet unorthodox methods. He is reluctantly paired to solve disturbing crimes with a new female partner named Sana Fayez who is cultured, hot-tempered, sassy and smart.
These archetypal characters can be seen in many different crime drama television shows such as The Mentalist, Castle, and Forever. But writer Fred Van Lente distinguishes his story with its scientifically smart and informing narrative, supernatural crime elements, and an underlying and sophisticated plot that adds depth to both main protagonists. Bottom line is that there is more than meets the eye with this horror, crime story.
Readers learn that Sebastian Greene subtly uses his supernatural senses, which are beyond human nature, to give him an edge as a reputable detective. From a scientific standpoint, it is fascinating and interesting to understand how Greene utilizes these senses. It adds a layer of mystery and complexity to the character and, in return, grabs and retains the reader’s attention.
Another distinguishable aspect of this issue is its supernatural crime elements. Each crime scene is a bizarre and disturbing case that seems almost too ridiculous to solve, if not for the fitting skillset of Sebastian Greene. With that said, Weird Detective #1 presents its strange case and slowly accelerates the progress of it, only to find out that the issue introduces yet another one. On one hand, this method of storytelling allows the reader to juggle multiple cases on top of the individual stories that each character has to offer in the hopes that it is all connected. On the other hand, one may argue that the issue lacks a general sense of direction and focus as the story tries to fit in a number of supernatural elements that are not yet connected. Nonetheless, the issue develops an exceptional setup and is full of opportunity to make the reader want to learn what will happen next.
Van Lente has perfectly crafted the main protagonists, Greene and Fayez, whose underlying plots are carefully woven together to add more depth and purpose to the story. With Greene, readers know that he is a “weird detective” with unusual habits, supporting characters and abilities. Though his purpose and story are unclear, we are introduced to his new partner Fayez who helps us discover it. Through Fayez readers begin to understand why she has been partnered with Greene and are able to comprehend his supernatural origin and story as it unfolds.
Overall, Weird Detective #1 lives up to its name as it introduces genuinely weird and creepy elements to create a crime story filled with smartly written characters. Artist Guiu Vilanova is able to illustrate this seamlessly with his bizarre character designs and great pace in panelling. Vilanova’s art is also very rich in detail and grounds the reader into the world of Weird Detective. But we can’t leave out colourist Mauricio Wallace. Wallace’s colouring breathes life into this issue and sets the tone of each scene. For example, every time we see Greene tap into his supernatural state, the colour Wallace associates the scene with is the colour purple. The purple brings out the weirdness of Greene and helps the reader identify that. Together, the creative team behind Weird Detective is very much in tune and has composed an issue that, as mentioned before, is an exceptional setup to see where the story goes next.