Have you ever wondered why Santa Claus started doing what he does? What motivated him to bring joy to thousands upon thousands of children every year?
Grant Morrison‘s Klaus is giving us an entirely new look at the jolly old fat man in a red suit, and it is abso-bloody-lutely incredible.
Grant Morrison is the kind of writer that has some pretty high expectations that tend to follow him and his work around, and with his distinctly Norse flavoured take on Jolly Saint Nick, he has delivered on every page. That Dan Mora‘s artwork plays a large part in that deliverance is beyond a shadow of a doubt; the way he conveys the absolute depression of the town’s people without even showing their faces through the use of bleak and muted colours and the physical expression is perfectly suited to the writing.
Just as the town’s people look genuinely lost and full of despair under Lord Magnus‘s iron fisted rule with the men being worked to the point of exhaustion, and beyond; anything even remotely resembling a toy has been banned and confiscated; the incredible sense of poverty, both monetarily and emotionally, is palpable on every page.
Every page, that is, where Klaus doesn’t appear.
Klaus, the man that will be Santa, is more of a hero in this series than many other spandex clad characters around right now. He is the very embodiment of hope, a beacon shining against the darkness; not unlike a certain red caped character from Krypton. There’s a warmth about the character, not only because of the colours used around him, but because he feels like when your grandpa would tell you stories before you fall asleep, or when your uncle would talk to you about his garden. Klaus may not be Santa yet, but he’s already got some magic about him.
Despite the at times incredibly bleak and cold art from Dan Mora, Klaus is a comic that has a good feeling about it. No matter how dismal things looking right now for the town’s people, there’s a genuine sense of hope given to both the reader, and the oppressed citizens under Lord Magnus‘s rule by the man who will become Santa. It’s an almost tangible thing that reaches beyond the printed page; no matter how bad things get, they can get better.
And isn’t the entire point of Santa Claus to inspire hope and goodwill?
Writer: Grant Morrison Art: Dan Mora
Story: 9 Art: 9 Overall: 9 Recommendation: Buy
Boom! Studios provided a FREE copy for review, but I’ve been buying the individual issues anyway.