The Red Diaries – Gary Reed

red-diariesThis is certainly an unusual work in the normal backdrop of comics. It is a fictional story of the assassination of Marilyn Monroe and by extension John F. Kennedy.

It was originally a four issue series and at the end of each there is an explanation of the facts and theories that abound in these two deaths. It is very open about not drawing any real life conclusions but does stress the moral right to know the truth.

The characters are a team called Raven Inc. that normally look into paranormal mysteries. Reed has used them elsewhere and there is a hefty write-up at the start about who these thirteen ensemble protagonists are. Assuming the fact the big chief is called Edgar Allan Raven isn’t too camp for you the huge cast is reasonably easy to manage. This is good storytelling with some neat little twists.

The star of the show is obviously the conspiracy, one that has fascinated America for decades, and Reed has his own fictional slant on matters. He also delivers hefty doses of historical detail and this makes a great introduction or refresher into the mess surrounding the death of a president.

The art is plain black and white with virtually all square panels. The minimalist style works just fine as you have a lot of text to take in. There are plenty of what look like period photos and illustrations which may or may not be genuine but remind you of the real world roots and more specifically real people involved.

This is definitely something unusual and an enjoyable and worthwhile read.

Double Thumbs Up!!

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