Dylan Dog 426 - Death up for grabs, review

Dylan Dog 426 - Death up for grabs, review

Dylan Dog 426 - Death up for grabs

The iconic chess game with Death is an event that has passed through multiple doors of the art scene, whether it is about cinema, literature and therefore comics, an epic battle that on several occasions also saw our Dylan Dog on the chessboard. This month, certainly taking up the "classic Dylandogian" narrative, history in a certain sense repeats itself with this Dylan Dog 426 - Death up for grabs written by Rita Porretto and Silvia Mericone, but the past never returns as expected and this story wants to keep the reader in the dark about everything in the black sea of ​​nightmares of poor Ruth Palmer.

Dylan Dog 426 and Death at stake

Only by reading Death at stake, you can realizes not only how apt the title is, but also how this new story differs from the challenges Dylan has faced with Death in his previous adventures.

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Ruth Palmer is a director and Dylan's old flame who, in addition to sharing her alcohol addiction with him, is going through a distressing personal and professional period. Her life finally seems to smile at her when Sandra Martin enters her existence. One evening Sandra is found dying in her house and the main suspect of Scotland Yard is Ruth. What would have prompted Ruth to kill her? And what exactly does Sandra's dark past hide?

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It goes without saying that Dylan is the only person able to trust Ruth in such a tragic moment, yet, following the clues and evidence gathered by the police, something is wrong. Without giving you inappropriate spoilers, we can only anticipate that in front of the relentless Reaper Sandra will sit for a game of chess that instead of allowing her to get her life back in exchange, she will take the opportunity to take it away from a whole series of characters that are part of her life and than that of Ruth, thus causing unexplained deaths in reality.

What is real between life and death

Throughout the story, a minimal backtracking is used by the scriptwriters. part on Dylan - appropriate to explain the link between the investigator and Ruth, with some references to his past as an alcoholic and a policeman - while in the majority and more necessary on Ruth's childhood, in order to give a linear and complete picture about the woman's personality, about her dreams and the uncertainties nurtured by those around her. Ultimately reflecting that it was "destiny" for Ruth to meet Sandra, the authors pushed on a truly excellent characterization of this character, useful for reserving the twists and turns of this story.

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The narrative also includes forays of reality into unreality (Dylan who intervenes in the match between Sandra and Death) and vice versa (with the murders ), making everything linear by calling into question the Suspension of Incredulity, where the will to ignore the secondary inconsistencies of a story is exercised in order to truly believe it, making true what may not be.

In all these scenes the absolute protagonists are the tables of Paolo Armitano, full of a dynamism typical of overseas comics that we rarely find in the pages of our Dylan, with perfectly fitting chiaroscuro, soft scenes on the fashbacks and a dark layout much appreciated on the scenes crucial. The characters, worthily represented, re-propose one of our most appreciated Dylans (we had seen him in Dylan Dog - Who dies revisits himself, issue 398).

The cover of the Cestaro brothers fully reflects the will of this album: to recall of the great classics, but taking a very personal and different solution than in the past. Dylan is not the player facing Death in the chess game, but one of the pawns. A cover that will surely remain etched in the readers' memory.

After some uncertainty of the previous months, a book arrives on the newsstand that seems to follow that path of modern re-enactment of the first books of Dylan, a path started with the editor of the magazine Roberto Recchioni with the 401 The Black Dawn and then a bit lost immediately after the end of the mini cycle 666. Dylan Dog 426 - The Death at stake is a strong, deep and old style adventure that we are some readers of the "old guard" and those of the last hour will like it, with the pleasure of following an investigation on the edge of reality - typical of our Dylan - and of discovering how deep the human psyche is, wonderful until the last page and prompting the reader, for mere amusement, to reread it again and then ask himself: what is real and what should I have believed?

Finally, we share the curator's choice and we in turn recommend listening to the cantata scenic by Carmina Burana, composed by Car l Orff between 1935 and 1936, the same work that inspired Ingmar Bergman, author of Il Settimo Sigillo.

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