From Dark Horse Comics comes Trout: The Hollowest Knock, a charmingly bizarre piece of nautical fiction. The book follows Giuseppe, whose turnip factory is burned down by the townsfolk of Upton who blame him for the loss of their children. After the inferno has cooled down, the town then runs Giuseppe and his charge, baby Trout out of town. Sick and distraught, the two have no other recourse but to travel across the ocean to Giuseppe’s childhood village.
In another cruel turn of events, Trout is lost along the way. Making matters worse, Giuseppe is forced to deal with his brother’s constant meddling in order to find the mysterious little boy he’s sworn to protect. Can Giuseppe find him before Trout meets his fate at the hands of the god of the sea?! And who is the shadowy figure trapped in a giant shark egg who is struggling to keep Trout alive?! One thing’s for certain: For better or worse, Trout will never be the same again.
Troy Nixey pens an Oddysey-esque tale with an art style that’s sure to please monster movie lovers. Seriously, this stuff is pure eye candy. The artistry can be best compared to the Cartoon Network show, The Marvelous Misadventures of Flapjack. It’s beautifully grotesque while bordering on almost cartoonish. I love it all so very much, especially how the sea monsters are drawn. Overall, there’s a hallucinogenic quality to the imagery in the inaugural issue that helps heighten this visual sea shanty.
Captivating and whimsical, Trout: The Hollowest Knock definitely has that much needed bewitching quality that any good story needs to keep the reader wanting more. It certainly had that effect on me. By the end of this issue I couldn’t help letting out a frustrated sigh. Cliffhangers are the worst, aren’t they? At least I have Troy Nixey’s other works (which include more Trout comics!) to hold me over till the next issue’s release.
In the beginning of this tale, we are gifted an unusual love story. However, things quickly go downhill as we see Giuseppe is publicly blamed for the loss of Upton’s children. Despite the severity of this crime Giuseppe is only banished from the town. Sure, he lost just about everything but at least he’s alive, right? Surely things could settle down, won’t they? Wrongo. It is made apparent right away that this comic is not short on adventure. You instantly feel compassion for this unusual duo as the whole world seems to be against them right now. Just when you think they’ve found some sort of safety, they are immediately thrown back in a whirlwind of danger.
I think my favorite thing about this comic is that, as of this issue, the age demographic can be up in the air. Being in my early 20’s, I couldn’t help noticing that this comic and storyline is complex enough to keep ahold of my attention while simple enough to restore my childlike wonder as I eagerly read on. Since this is the first of this series there isn’t much else to say without me giving too much away.
Overall, I highly recommend you put Trout: The Hollowest Knock on your summer reading list. It’s a wonderfully fun and incredibly entertaining adventure that’s bound to entice bibliophiles of all ages.
Trout: The Hollowest Knock is published by Dark Horse Comics and is written and drawn by Troy Nixey and is colored by Dave Stewart. It is now available in comic book shops and via the Dark Horse website.
Wicked Rating: 7/10