By Katy Scott
Working with his incredibly talented wife, Sharlene Kindt, as the watercolorist, Matt Kindt headlines as writer and illustrator for his newest comic, Dept. H.
Some of his other works that I have recently enjoyed reading are Super Spy, 2 Sisters, Mind MGMT, Divinity and you can bet I am adding Dept. H to that list.
The comic intrigued me from the first page. Dept. H is a deep-sea station conducting research for a government organization called USEAR. But all is not well six miles beneath the ocean surface. Dept. H has been sabotaged and Mia is looking to find the answers, and why her father, who was head of the department, was murdered.
The writing carries meaning in every panel. It’s precise and to the point, and coincides perfectly with the art. This is, in essence, how a great comic should read. The art and the writing work conjointly to tell the story and propel us into the deep-sea world that lies before us, done in beautiful watercolors.
The watercolors are my favorite part of this comic. The colors capture my attention from the first few pages. When I hit the first splash page, I feel the overwhelming presence of the ocean and the depth of where this story is headed.
Each character is drawn out precisely to convey his or her emotions and personas. The different tones of color define the world in which the story takes place and the emotions of Mia’s world. Sharlene Kindt uses dramatic yellows, oranges and reds at times that contrast well with the blues and blacks of the ocean and deep-sea base. I am drawn to the yellow of Mia’s deep-sea suit; she is always a bright focal point.
The watercolors only enhance the detailed lined sketches. The line work is simple, yet conveys so much detail in each panel. Take time to look at everything and what it might mean for the story. What might be a clue for what has transpired?
The art is raw yet beautiful. There are times throughout this first issue where the audience sees flashback scenes, which only strengthens the story without skipping a beat. It magnifies what Mia remembers. The use of only blues and blacks takes out any emotion and the audience is put into the bleakness of what Mia’s world has become.
By the end of this first issue, the story leaves me wanting more. What is the true purpose of Dept. H? Why would someone want to sabotage the base? What will unfold as we learn more between Mia and the other characters from Mia’s past?
This is a must have comic you want to pick up. Each new monthly issue will have art and insights from the creators that you won’t be able to get anywhere else. Every issue will lead you closer and closer to the answers that we are searching for. I eagerly wait for issue #2. If you love adventure, mystery and suspense, I recommend diving deep into Dept. H!