Writer John Lees teams up with artist Alex Cormack on the second issue of his Sink title being released through ComixTribe and after a suitably gory yet entertaining opener I was keen to see which direction he was going to take.
This issue opens with a very different type of tale from that first issue and we find ourselves in the aftermath of a ménage à trois gone wrong that brings our “nice” couple with the quandary of discrete body disposal. The Sinkhill connection is still there in the shape of local cleaner Sharon who is very direct with her clients and there’s much more to her than it seems. The cleanup is underway and she’s soon travelling back to Sinkhill to take care of the body but this is where the sinister edge drifts in.
In a surprising turn of events the body seems to come back to life and as she drifts into the underground world hidden in the shadows of Sinkhill itself there are more colourful characters for us to be introduced to which seems to be something John is able to drop in here and there to almost distract us enough to make what’s coming next all the more unsettling. Sharon’ back and forth with the resurrected victim, Scott, all comes across as very heartfelt and open but again it ends up being another way to help the reader drop their guard for what will eventually unfold.
Sharon’s life as a “cleaner” and her coping mechanism may seem unhinged but then the world of Sinkhill is as far from normal as you can get. This second issue really begins to open up what John is aiming for as he wants to cover as many different characters as he can and these first two issues have proven that anything goes while he does that. He’ll unnerve you as things progress with a slick blend of gruesome reality and dreamlike escapism and while he weaves that messed up set of scenes in your head he has Alex to push that gritty notion into the panels with a masterful mix of honesty & anguish that hide a visceral underbelly that is ready to attack you from the shadows at every page turn. Behind all that is Shawn Lee on lettering who does a great job of keeping the tension flowing from John’s script.
It might represent a slightly jarring change of pace from that opening issue for some readers but the Sinkhill thread throughout and the firm focus on generating a nightmarish world gives this an episodic feel that’s exceptionally entertaining. You’re then left with the lingering notion that the lines between good & bad are much more blurred here than you would have expected and that in itself makes Sink a series that we really have to wait until the next issue to find out what direction it’s going to take…..a winning approach from John at the helm.