Review: Hack/Slash: My First Maniac #1

Published on June 14th, 2010

Hack/Slash: My First Maniac #1 is the first publication for Tim Seeley’s ‘Hack/Slash’ since it moved to Image Comics from DDP. I have loved Tim’s Hack/Slash series for a while now, and although I have not been following it since it’s beginning, I can tell you that a year or so ago, I did the deed any good fan would and went back and bought both the Hack/Slash omnibuses, of which I have both truly enjoyed!

When I first heard that Hack/Slash had moved to Image Comics, I was pleased, because it would hopefully give the series the big boost in popularity it needed. I’ve always believed it to be a wonderful series and I wouldn’t say that the move to ‘boost popularity’ is a move that would give it the opportunity to live up to it’s ‘full potential’, as it has always lived up to it’s potential in my eyes. It is more that it just needed to be in a place where it could really take off, and get into the public eye. I do not mean that I wanted Hack/Slash to sell out either, just to become more noticed. No disrespect to DDP, I mean they did an absolutely wonderful job publishing Hack/Slash and it ran for many, many issues under their watchful eye, but Image Comics is the best place for it too have relocated too, without a doubt.

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I can happily say that Hack/Slash: My First Maniac #1, is a brilliant read for new readers to the series especially, but also to those fans who have read everything, or almost everything (I fit into the later group, ‘almost everything’) published at DDP.

Hack/Slash: My First Maniac #1, is the start of a short mini series, retelling the origins of Cassie Hack, our sexy protaganist in this world of terror and violence in which she lives. Cassie Hack is a girl who kills slashers (slashers like JasonVoorhees and Freddy Krueger for example, although not them specifically but undead nutjobs like them), people who die but that hell won’t accept, and exist in an undead or demonic state to terrorise others. It is the age-old concept we’ve seen in many films and novels before, but Tim Seeley always tells his Hack/Slash stories with such a great knowledge on the vast genre of horror that it always comes across as refreshing and exciting!

This issue is very simple in it’s story, but not at all simple in it’s unfolding attitude. It is told as a reading from Cassie’s diary. It tells us why Cassie became a slasher killer. It stays very true to the original origins Tim wrote at DDP years ago. In that Cassie Hack was bullied at a school of which her mother was also the lunch lady (cook). Her mother used to chop up any girls who bullied Cassie and feed them to the kids at lunch the next day. When Cassie kills her mum, her mum comes back from the dead to do it all over again, and Cassie must deal with it once more. The issue also deals with Cassie living with her adapoted family once he she had to kill her mum (if you were wondering what happened to her dad, he left her when she was very little), and with her getting bullied at school, eventually beating up the bullies.

It sounds very basic in its plot for this first issue, and it is. It lays the seeds for many great stories to come. But do believe me when I say that even though it is basic, it not certainly not boring at all. The narrative is remarkably engaging through-out!

One thing that grabbed my attention was that this seems to be bringing the death of Cassie’s mum up to the year of death being 2010, suggesting that Tim Seeley has re-written her origins to fit into THIS year. This is fine by me. But this however does not go on to suggest that the stories which were told at DDP have been wipped from continuity (or so I assume), as the last page shows all the slashers she went up against while being published at DDP, as being fresh in her mind.

The artwork is good. It is solid, and the fight scenes are drawn very well! A lot of blood and some great brains on show! As long as the artist captures Cassie in that dark, yet innocent quirky beauty she has, then that’s good by me. I wish Tim Seeley would both write and draw this though, as he draws Cassie (and Vlad, who hopefully will show up next issue) better than anyone else!

It was a really awesome first issue and even though the whole issue was being told as an entry in a diary, it was still much, much more entertaining than I ever would have thought. It is wonderful how Cassie still remains the unpredictable, oddly relatable and the deadly-sexy girl that she has always been! Vive le Cassie Hack. One of my favourite slasher killers. Welcome to your new home at Image Comics, and long may you thrive there!

Rob Andrews
Rob@comicimpact.com