Eric J has worked on several publications, including the likes of Grimm Fairy Tales, Doctor Who, and Dungeon & Dragons. He is better known as the co-creator of Rex Mundi, published by Image. His signature artwork is dark and creepy, creating lots of atmosphere. Let’s Play God is no different. Some of the panels are barely visible and need the reader to really concentrate to make things out, but it suits this story well. Writer Zane Grant’s previous work includes IDW’s We Will Bury You and Brea Grant also worked in the same publication, as well as IDW’s Suicide Girls. They have a macabre writing style and should mesh well with the style of Eric J. Interestingly, Brea Grant also played Daphne Millbrook in Heroes and some smaller roles in TV and movies, so can this brother and sister writing team bring the story to accompany Eric J’s artwork? Read on.
The story starts with the introduction of up-and-coming punk band, Doomed Earth, rehearsing together while a mysterious figure writes things about the band members. Kira plays the drums, Mel is the band’s guitarist, while Little Billy is on the keyboards and has the singing duties, too. Whoever is writing this down hates the three girls and what they stand for and wants them dead. Kira and Mel head to the rooftops for a drink, while Billy mysteriously heads home. Horror strikes, as Mel witnesses the brutal death of a photographer through his apartment window. A figure wearing a mask comes from behind, slitting his throat and causing his head to crash through the glass, leaving him covered in blood draped over the smashed window. Mel panics and dials 911. The police are on their way, but, when she goes over to the apartment, she discovers Billy standing there, just as the police arrive. This doesn’t look good at all for Billy!
Two hours later, the two girls are being interviewed at the police station. Something isn’t right here. Billy has something to hide. She hands a photo album to Mel, telling her that she knew the dead photographer and saying that the police can’t get their hands on the album. Mel is allowed to leave, but Billy is detained, as things aren’t adding up. Mel arrives home, confused as to why Billy was in the apartment. She goes to sleep, with all sorts of things running around in her head. She can’t sleep and decides to watch TV, but all that’s on is about people getting killed… the last thing she wants to watch. She decides to take a look at the album Billy handed to her. It’s full of naked pictures of Billy in compromising positions. No wonder she didn’t want the police to see them. Mel is startled by a bang at the door. Grabbing a carving knife, she decides to check it out. Nice, dark panels here, as she makes her way to the door. It’s hard to see what’s happening, but it would be the same for Mel, so Eric J’s atmospheric drawings are spot on. She answers the door to find Billy standing. As tears roll down her face, she tells Mel she has something to tell her. What is her secret? Is she here to confess to the murder? Or has she something more sinister to tell her band mate?
Let’s Play God has started off like a creepy “Who Done It?”, with lots of questions to ask already. What’s Billy’s tie-in with what went on? What does she want to tell Mel? Who is the mysterious figure writing at the beginning? Is it the masked killer? Well written by Brea Grant and her brother Zane and brilliantly illustrated by Eric J, especially the gruesome death scene, which left little to the imagination. Issue #2 should answer a few questions for us and probably leave us with some more. So, over all, a good start to a promising story and a solid 7.5/10 for this first issue.