Outcast, Vol.3: This Little Light
Publisher: Image Comics
Genre: Graphic Novel, Sequential Art, Horror
Release Date: June 21st 2016
Page Count: 128
I remember the first time I picked up Outcast, Volume 1. It was last summer and I was in HMV in Toronto and the cover caught my eye. Although I admittedly do love judging a book by its cover, a beautiful cover still isn’t enough for me to purchase a book, especially one I hadn’t heard of previously. I proceeded to read the description on the back and that’s when I knew I needed to give this series a read. I didn’t even realize it was written by Robert Kirkman, a.k.a. the creator of The Walking Dead until the lovely cashier mentioned it to me.
Overall, I found the first two volumes of Outcast to be good, but nothing special. Nothing really made me think “wow, this is amazing”. The story moved quite slowly and it didn’t really pick up the pace until the cliffhanger ending of volume two, which was one key factor in my decision to pre-order volume three.
After finishing the second volume, I had heard the news that Outcast was being adapted into a television series. Based on my lack of awe while reading the first two volumes, I figured I’d like the show, but it wouldn’t be a stand out or that it wouldn’t live up to my expectations as a huge fan of The Walking Dead television series. I am happy to announce that I was completely wrong in the best way possible. The first episode of the television series aired last week and I absolutely loved the shit out of it. I watched it twice, I loved it that much. The pacing was so much quicker and the writing, acting and special effects were all on point, but I digress. I’ll be writing a review and comparison of the first season once it is finished airing. All you need to know is that it was amazing and it was the second key factor in my decision to pre-order the third volume of the comic series.
For some blessed reason, my pre-order showed up in my mailbox two weeks early. When I saw it waiting for me on the 9th, prior to it’s release of June 21st, I was beyond ecstatic. I don’t know if the Canadian release date is different compared to what is stated on Goodreads/Amazon, but hey, I’m not complaining one bit. After becoming ridiculously hyped up after watching just one episode of the television adaptation, I was so ready for more Outcast.
A quick refresh: Outcast tells the story of a man named Kyle Barnes who is surrounded by demons that possess his loved ones. He has no idea why this is happening and he also has no idea why they all seem to know him and refer to him as “Outcast”. For some unknown reason, Kyle as the power to extract these demons from the human bodies they have possessed, but usually at a terrible cost.
Outcast Vol.3: This Little Light, did not disappoint. The pacing was much quicker this time around. While moments of the story were still quite vague and a lot of questions remain unanswered, the story moved much quicker. I completely devoured it. I don’t think I have read anything that fast in a long time. We are slowly gaining more answers, but it does also feel like every time we get an answer to one question, a new question forms. Which as annoying as it is, because I’m impatient and want to know everything right now, it also works as a great tool to keep readers coming back for more.
Kyle continues to become more relatable as the story continues. We know that he is severely misunderstood and we know that he is willing to take the blame for crimes that he did not commit in order to protect his loved ones. Hopefully more characters continue to see this as Kyle deserves better.
I did feel as though moments were slightly repetitive. I know that the story revolves around a man surrounded by demons possessing the people he loves, but it has been happening in every single volume with basically the same results. I’m hoping something changes soon as this might get a little old if it continues to happen in every single volume.
While the cliffhanger at the end of the second volume was addressed and served as a main story line throughout this story arch, this volume also ended with a bit of a cliffhanger, albeit a rather confusing one. It created a new question that I need answered ASAP.
The artwork by Paul Azaceta is, once again, wonderful. It’s dark and haunting and works perfectly with the darker tone of the story. There was actually a few little details that portrayed perfect storytelling within images alone. There were a few close ups of characters faces to show their expressions that really helped showcase how the people around Kyle were feeling. Another small detail that I loved was the close up of a crow in the distance behind Kyle in one scene. I automatically heard the crow caw in my head which made for an excellent storytelling device.
I think my interest in this series is definitely peaking and I’m eager to continue with reading the series and watching the television show. I am absolutely loving the amount of graphic novels and comic books that are being adapted into television and film lately and Outcast is a perfect addition to that list.