Dylan Dog 417: Judgment Hour, review

Dylan Dog 417: Judgment Hour, review

Dylan Dog 417

Dylan Dog was arrested on charges of killing Ilary, a woman he was dating recently, but in the previous story narrated by Mauro Uzzeo and rendered in the dark tables by Arturo Lauria, our investigator had to deal with the imprisonment of the his own mind. The story continues this month with The hour of judgment, with the Dylandoghian excellences of Barbara Baraldi and the master Angelo Stano at the pencils, again taking up the subconscious of Dylan and that of poor Ilary who will be the real protagonists of the trial in the courtroom which is happening in reality ... or perhaps in the nightmare of one of the two. Who is the real culprit? But above all, what really happened to Ilary?

The hour of judgment

The story we have just finished reading is a journey of the mind and in the mind. So if you have any doubts, let's get rid of it immediately: The hour of judgment is a complex story, a very psychological drama, which already in its first part of the story contained in the previous issue "The Prisoner", reviewed on these pages, seemed to have given the best of herself from this point of view.

Instead, although she prefers a different style, less claustrophobic and obscure, Barbara Baraldi continues on the same track, indeed, a double track that sees the struggle between Dylan and his monsters and the one between poor Ilary's dark memories and survival itself. But let's take a step back to understand what exactly is happening to the Craven Road tenant.

In the first part of this story present in the previous book "The Detained", written by Mauro Uzzeo with the tables of Arturo Lauria, Dylan Dog appears to be being unjustly detained on a murder charge against Ilary, a girl he was dating.

After witnessing a real dream journey in his mind populated by all his fears, Dylan tries to remain lucid by anchoring himself to his unique certainties and to the true sense of freedom. A freedom that, however, risks losing if he does not prove his innocence at the trial that sees him as the number one suspect in the girl's death.

The struggle with his own subconscious

The story told from the talented Barbara Baraldi she takes a rather introspective turn, more than what happened with the previous issue, facing very strong fears that in everyday life are able to destroy our entire existence. For example, the death of a family member.

In fact, the real "recluse" of this story is Ilary who, having been involved in the death of her brother at an early age, has never overcome the trauma remaining closed in between towering walls of his subconscious. The woman, desperate, turns to a professor at her university who is very close to the theory of "mindsight" developed by Daniel J. Siegel, a well-known American psychiatrist.

To give you an idea of ​​what Siegel's study predicts, know that mindsight is a process that helps to strengthen the circuits of the medial prefrontal cortex - as if they were real muscles to be trained - directly in contact with the subcortical regions, or those areas responsible for producing and storing emotions. These concepts are closely linked to neuroplasticity, that is the ability of the brain to create new neural connections and new neurons through lived experiences. Net of the empirical data that can be obtained, it is a very fascinating scientific concept that establishes a connection between social relationships, events experiences and brain circuits. Hence the narrative pivotal element used by Baraldi - and in the story by Professor Chilton, Ilary's university professor - to ensure that the girl is able to shape beyond her fears and trauma and, finally, expel him to return to live .

Dylan's candlelit dinner, his arrest, his imprisonment and the trial ... are all events that serve our protagonist to find himself in order to guide Ilary in his rehabilitation path, a path that without the presence of a strong person, who can truly believe and see inside Ilary, there can be no end. Our Dylan, in fact.

The hour of judgment is a complex story, which crosses different dimensions and also with a certain irony that is very reminiscent of Sclavi's style, and as usual, it may not appeal to everyone although we confirm the very strong adherence to Dylan's typical themes. It remains surprising to see how, in reality, this number holds up very well even without its predecessor, offering readers small flashbacks that fill the narrative arc between the two books.

17 months have passed since the last appearance by maestro Angelo Stano in the pages of Dylan Dog (find our interview here!), to be precise from the celebratory one of # 400. Well, the author who for so many years accompanied the fans of the nightmare investigator with his 320 covers of the regular series, proves once again that he is one of the best illustrators of the magazine (despite having actually drawn "only" 16 stories in the regular series), giving us his timeless models, an iconic Dylan and sequences of very strong impact. The cover also rendered by the great Gigi Cavenago renders the hell from which Dylan will have to get away very well, also recalling a historical cartoon of Elevator to hell. Perhaps a mere coincidence, but we like to think that Gigi wanted to pay homage to the story drawn by Bruno Brindisi.

The hour of judgment is a story that will make you reflect on your fears and on how to overcome them, a principle dear to the character of Tiziano Sclavi, once again in the role of the one who can guide us in the absurd, the tragic and the nightmare. From this point of view, the author did a great job. Staging the detention and the trial for the entire duration of the story, however, also reveals the complex key to reading the events, especially when these are pigeon-holed between the various dimensions that more or less affect the reality that the protagonists are experiencing, rendering, in definitive, the story perhaps not really accessible to everyone. But maybe this is not how we want our Dylan?

For the reading of this album we recommend The Unforgiven and Nothing else matters both contained in the Black Album of Metallica.

Dear returning and loyal around Craven Road,

Monday 7 June at 9:00 pm on the Twitch channel of Pop Culture of sportsgaming.win Italia, we will talk about Dylan Dog, from the book The hour of judgment just arrived on newsstands, and we will have the honor of hosting Antonio Tentori, author of the novel The child who wanted to play with dolls.


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