Favorite Comic: The Crow


Where the teeth of madness jump, jump dance and sing…

I just – I can’t even. The Crow by J. O’Barr is just amazing in how much I absolutely love it. Here, have a synopsis:

Eric Draven and his girlfriend Shelley meet their brutal demise at the hands of the inner city’s most notorious characters. Exactly a year later, Eric is brought back to life and granted the powers of superhuman strength and vision in order that he may seek vengeance on those who killed him – all under the watchful eye of a mysterious crow. One by one, Eric seeks out the gang, who are out for another evening of mayhem and violence, unaware of the fate that awaits them…

It’s pure emotional allegory. There is anger and pain twisted into every word on every page. It’s hard to quote it without ending up quoting the whole dang thing. The art is beautiful. The words are gorgeous. The whole thing just comes together and lives. If that makes any sense at all. Because it’s apparent from the opening lines that all he wants is pain and hate. And fear is for the enemy. Fear and bullets. That was paraphrased.

It’s really difficult to describe to you how much I actually love this book. If I was talking to you face to face I would be throwing my arms around making strange noises in a futile attempt to communicate. Because just – I can’t – I can’t even –

“So the crow spirals down through a collapsed dream and the only sound it makes is like a concave scream.”

“When sorrow comes, they come not single spies, but in battalions. I’ve allies in heaven, Jack, I’ve comrades in hell…say hello for me…”

“Around, around the sun we go, the moon goes ’round the earth, we do not die of death – we die of vertigo.”

Um, yeah. This is the book where our protagonist cuts off a guy’s feet and sits down and has a conversation with him. This is a comic well the last frame of violence is all you need to know – a broken man, a hammer, and the man who broke him. From the first to the last line, it’s fucking poetry, man.

I am filled with this rush of excitement every time I remove it from it’s own hidden shelf and it’s special wrapper. I want to laugh when I hold it in my hands. Because it’s mine. It was written before I was born, before I was a thought. I’ve never met the author and I never will. But it’s mine and it always will be. I’m you you know what that feels like.

‘Remember when you said “Mine?” and I said “Forever.” You said “Only forever?”

It’s forever, now.’



  1. Agreed. ‘The Crow’ is gorgeous, gorgeous poetry. I actually got into it via the film starring Brandon Lee – I don’t know what you think of that adaptation, but I love it and consider it a favourite. After that I had the opportunity to borrow a copy of the graphic novel and read the original. So yes, sadly I don’t have a copy which is “mine”, but at least I was able to have the experience.

    1. I first read it because my dad has a ton of comic books and thought I’d like it, so he lent it to me. I ordered my own copy soon after that. It’s a special edition with a new cover and a dedication to Brandon Lee at the beginning. Even though the adaption was fairly loose, I really liked it. I think its really the best they could have done without making it NC-17. And Brandon Lee was great.

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