Hack/Slash: Omnibus 1

Hack Slash 1Summary: At the end of every horror movie, one girl always survives… in this case, Cassie Hack not only survives, she turns the tables by hunting and destroying the horrible slashers that would do harm to the innocent! Alongside the gentle giant known as Vlad, the two cut a bloody path through those who deserve to be put down… hard!

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Hack/Slash: Omnibus 1, by Tim Seeley and various artists 6.5

‘Hack/Slash’ is comic book series from author and penciled Tim Seeley, whose most notable output has been his work on the ‘G.I. Joe’ line of comics, including the ‘G.I. Joe vs Transformers’ series. It’s about the young daughter of a slasher who decides to take it upon herself to rid the world of other slashers.

I have no recollection of ever requesting ‘Hack/Slash’ from my local library, but it’s conceivable that I may have made the request in the aftermath of ‘Revival‘. I do tend to request many of the works of authors I more-or-less enjoy. But it took me a long time to get to it: I’ve had this book at home for months.

I probably shouldn’t have bothered.

I mean, I like the core concept of hunting horror film-type slashers, and I like the main characters, Cassie Hack and Vlad, I really do, but I feel that the writing is quite slipshod. To make matters worse, the artwork is wildly inconsistent, with new artists brought in from one volume to the next. And they’re not all good.

There are many continuity errors. The first volume alone had two or three significant ones, like Cass going into the vet’s office to save the guy but, in the next scene, the guy is alone somewhere (his house?) and he gets caught by the killer. Then Cass goes to the victim’s home. Um… what happened there?

In the second volume, there’s a scene where Cass infiltrates a Girls Gone Naughty party to catch her killer. Some guy slips her a Long Island iced tea, after she asked for something without alcohol or caffeine in it. Predictably, she drinks it and doesn’t even notice the alcohol. Naturally, she gets drunk and gets wild. Ahem.

Honestly, does Seeley think we’re idiots? Or just that his character is (especially given that she was supposedly vigilantly looking for her killer. And wary, if not condescending, of those frat boys)? She would have been way more aware of what was going on, if not the potential for it to happen. Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Very quickly, I got the feeling that this was going to be two-dimensional stuff: fun, but utterly meaningless in the end. And it was. The characters don’t really develop, they are easily pliable to fit Seeley’s latest twist, and there is no real vision in this story. If anything, it feels like the very slasher films it pokes fun at.

It got me thinking that perhaps that this is the point all along. That, given the inspiration (Lord knows that slasher films never show any depth!), it intended to play along the same lines – for readers that enjoy that sort of stuff. Maybe. But I like slashers of the kind that ‘Scream’ is: with brains, wit, and winks at its audience.

Unfortunately, ‘Hack/Slash’ is all action, teenage thrills and gore, nothing more. After reading one or two volumes, you get the point and you don’t need to read any further. I really do like the base concept, but it needs more than that to survive. It’s an idea that gets old very fast, not matter how cute Cassie is.

At least the Omnibus edition gives fans plenty to sink their teeth into: it’s chock full of great extras, such as original covers, other art, annotations, character files, …etc. I’m not a fan, but if I were, I would love to see just how much was put into this. It’s a terrific collection from that perspective. But it’s not enough for me.

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