Boneyard, Volume 6 Review
Boneyard is a series about a guy – Michael Paris is his name – who inherited a cemetery way back in issue #1, and arrived to find it full of various monsters from myth and legend. Luckily, the vampire, werewolf, troll, gill-woman, and so on were friendly, and convinced him not to sell out to evil forces. As you can see from the cover, we’re up to the sixth collection by this point, so the series has settled into itself, and is somewhat predictable. (On the other hand, these are all thin collections, of about four issues apiece, so we’ve only gotten up to issue #24 – it’s not in any huge rut, just a comfortable status quo.)
The major overall plot of the Boneyard series involves the machinations of Certain Forces – culturally literate readers might take Mayor Wormwood’s surname as a major clue – to buy the cemetery from Michael or to obtain it in some other way. (For nefarious reasons, of course.) The main subplot centers on Michael’s very, very slowly budding romance with Abbey, the cute ancient vampire. (Given that much of Boneyard creator Richard Moore’s other work is pornographic, I find it amusing that his characters either immediately have sex upon meeting or are too shy to even talk to each other.)
This volume, though, isn’t really about either of those plots – it touches slightly on Abbey’s long-time rivalry with Lilith (another ancient, powerful vampiress), but it’s mostly about the cast going to a big dress-up party thrown by a previously unmentioned ultra-powerful supernatural being called the Luminary (who is called the Illuminary on the back cover).
The Luminary, we’re told, is in charge of all supernatural creatures on Earth, and the reason that they’re all generally so quiet and well-behaved (to the point of being thought legendary) us that the Luminary will smite them out of existence if they aren’t. And he’s throwing one of his periodic attendance-required parties, where a bunch of supernatural creatures (including Abbey) will get their latest report cards. This is not a subject anyone wants to fail.
So there’s some tension set up at the beginning, though the ending doesn’t really deliver on that. But Boneyard is most often a comedy, so a lot of the story here is made up of character bits involving the rest of the cast. (There’s a little demon who wants to conquer the world, a squat witch, a werewolf who considers himself cool, an oversexed gill-woman, a skeletal loudmouth, and a few others.) I find the characters enjoyable to spend time with, so I enjoyed this; I suspect any readers’ enjoyment of Boneyard will depend on his or her feelings towards the characters. If you like how Moore writes people, you’ll be a Boneyard fan; if not, not. So if the idea sounds interesting, check out the first volume. (Or this one, honestly – it stands pretty well on its own and introduces the people tolerably well.)
Boneyard, Vol. 6
NBM, 2007, $9.95
Andrew Wheeler has been a publishing professional for nearly twenty years, with a long stint as a Senior Editor at the Science Fiction Book Club and a current position at John Wiley & Sons. He’s been reading comics for longer than he cares to mention, and maintains a personal, mostly book-oriented blog at anticmusings.blogspot.com.
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