Book Title: Oxymoron: The Loveliest Nightmare #1
Book Description: Oxymoron: The Loveliest Nightmare tells the tale of disgraced Swanstown detective Mary Clark. Six months ago she was involved in a case that went sideways and resulted in what were perceived as preventable deaths.
In the six months that lapsed she’s learned she has Addison’s Disease. This is an autoimmune disease that causes her immune system to attack her body if she doesn’t maintain a strict medication regimen. In addition to that, she’s been demoted back to the rank of officer.
On her first day back she is assigned a new partner. Her partner is a rookie named Deborah Deanie. Deborah is a young and bright eyed lady from Kirkwood, a small town with a population of 734. She is convinced she’s going to be the one that makes a difference in the big city.
They respond to a suicide jumper at a nearby high rise building. Clark gets on the roof to try to talk the jumper down. The jumper is wearing a mask. He replies that if they don’t jump “he’ll kill them” and plunges to his death. On the ground the press has a field day with the fact that Clark is involved.
When Clark is trying to tell Detective Fisk about the jumper’s mask and how she’s seen it before he stops her cold. He’s not having any of her theories because he blames Clark for the death of her former partner. He then tells her to move along because his Anti-Corruption Task Force has a big operation that night and doesn’t have time to waste with her.
In autopsy we learn that the jumper’s mask and gloves are glued on in a manner that will make it impossible to identify him when they’re removed. They’re going to have to wait for a DNA test.
While that’s running the medical examiners continue to perform the autopsy. They see some fresh stitches in the victim’s abdomen.Upon cutting open the stitches they find a note that says “A public servant who serves himself”. Then the DNA test comes back revealing the victim to be the town mayor.
Fisk told Clark, “Tomorrow, Swanstown wakes up to shocking news”. He isn’t wrong. His team is on a stakeout to nail the mayor at a city funded brothel. Fisk has no idea that the mayor is really in the morgue.
When Fisk sees the mayor’s Mercedes pull up he is convinced he’s making a huge bust. Instead it’s a trap. The Mercedes is rigged with a car bomb that takes out most of the task force. Detective Fisk is able to pull himself away from the wreckage…. And he crawls right into the path of a masked man with a chainsaw. R.I.P. Detective Fisk.
The issue comes to a chilling conclusion with the masked man calling Clark with Fisk’s phone to taunt her about the jumper.
Book Author: Tyler James and John Lees
Book Format: Paperback
Publisher - Orgnization: Comix Tribe
Illustrator: Alex Cormack
Oxymoron: The Loveliest Nightmare #1 is not for the faint hearted. On the first page it kicks the reader in the crotch just to make sure it gets the full attention it deserves. From there it pulls the reader deeper into the story.
This title wasn’t on my radar. I stumbled across it in an online auction. The cover art reminds me of the Gleason Amazing Spider-Man covers (even though this came out years earlier). The artwork is powerful and makes you wonder what the story is about. It compelled me to buy the issue.
Some of the interior artwork is not as crisp as one would expect. Given the explicit nature of some of the content, that’s probably a good thing. I appreciated how well Clark’s body language was depicted when she was in the squad car.
This story is a hybrid of The Silence of the Lambs and the Joker from The Dark Knight. You truly get a feel for Officer Clark and Detective Fisk. Fisk wasn’t around long but he was written well enough to hate him.
As a geek on a budget I believe Oxymoron: The Loveliest Nightmare #1 is well worth the price of admission. The challenge is finding the remaining three issues in the series without paying collector’s prices.
Your best bet will probably be to go diving into back issues and the ding and dent section of your local comic book store and hope to get lucky. Happy hunting!
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