Brian Burke, one of the creators of Incandescent Memories, sent me all three books for review. It’s been some time since I actually received them – and I already had a hardcopy of one, so I was able to see the sort of quality intended in the printing of them – but various complications got in the way of actually writing a review (including thinking I had already done so, and not realising for another few weeks. Life is difficult sometimes.) But here we are: three issues of a comic by Brian Burke and John Devlin. As per usual, I don’t get overly critical. (The Irish comic creator circles are quite small, and they’re all so lovely it’s difficult not to become friends with them. Being a voice of reasoned applause and pointing out things I like is easier for me on a personal and editorial level.)
The first thing that one should know when picking up Incandescent Memories is that the book collects several stories in each issue. Each issue holds one thing in common, aside from its creators’ names on the cover: The Bandit King. Serialised across each issue, it’s the one continued narrative throughout each book.
Otherwise, the books present us with separate, fun stories from each of the two creators.
Taking turns in writing and illustrating each others’ work, Burke and Devlin give us a fun look at what each of them is capable of. Issue 1, the bumper four-story book, contains stories with each creator taking alternate roles, as well as providing solo stories where they act as writer and artist.
The first issue remains my favourite, but it has the benefit of containing more stories than the others. While readers can’t reasonably expect the same volume of work every issue from these two creators, it works as a great introduction into the sort of material the two Dublin creators like to make. The additional concept art in issues 1 and 2 also help to show off the drawing styles of each artist isolated from the actual stories within the books.
Overall, Incandescent Memories is an exciting comic to watch as new issues are released. With the continued tale of The Bandit King – a humorous fantasy story – written by Burke and drawn by Devlin, returning readers have something to look forward to, while new readers have additional stories to entice them into the potential of each creator.
Highly recommended, and a good sign of things to come from Dublin’s comic crowd.