Alan Moore’s journey through the world of H.P Lovecraft continues it’s slow build and sense of creeping dread as protagonist Robert Black arrives in Manchester (no, not the real Manchester) to find a particular book to help him in his research for his own book.
Even to someone that isn’t steeped in Lovecraft lore like myself will be able to work out just who from Lovecraft’s works Moore is referencing as the issue progresses.
Hector North? Herbert West more like it. Moore had to at some point deal with the lead character of the Re-Animator stories and films, so here we are as things continue to become creepy, and here’s a fantastic panel by artist Jacen Burrows which is part of Black being shown his room he’ll be boarding in while staying in Manchester, but there’s a lot more going on.
I love how the branches of the plant growing on the side of the house reach menacingly at Black, but only one small one reaches for his landlady, Mrs. Macey. There’s also a mirror panel a couple of pages later which is also fantastic.
I’ve not praised artist Jacen Burrows enough in these reviews. He really is turning out some incredible work and 99% of the time he’s just drawing people talking as there’s been (so far) very little fantastical or horrific for him to draw, but the sense of the fantastic and menace drips from his pages. He also seems to get Moore’s scripts perfectly, something not every artist does when they work with Moore.
His ability to make the seemingly ordinary something fearful is fantastic. Considering I’m more familiar to his work via his Crossed material which dripped in extreme images, the subtlety and craft here is showing what a real talent he is. Especially for drawing creeping vines…
This issue of Providence is superb.There’s not only a ramping up of the threat aimed at Robert Black, as well as the more fantastical aspects which Moore has been very carefully drip feeding us readers now for four issues. As for black this issue suggests things aren’t going to go well for him in the future so I’ll be back next issue to see how Moore manages to get Black out of the situation he’s walking into at the end of this issue.