The amount of serial killer s--t nowadays is preposterously astounding. Dexter, Hannibal, The Following (sadly), True Detective, and yes, none of those are comics, but that’s just the stuff I can think of off the top of my head. For comics we got Hack/Slash, and… look, lots of stuff, okay? As a true crime fan, and a fan of fiction involving serial killers, it goes against my M.O. when I read mediocre and derivative serial killer fare. And in a way, Nailbiter is just that. Small town with a serial killer, who is framed for murder. Detective (look, he’s basically one, I don’t care if he’s in the Army), who has a temper, and uses too much force. But there are enough sparks of ingenuity that Nailbiter so far as a series, and issue #3 in particular, is a fun and frantic foray into ferocious frightening famous freaks.
Nailbiter #3 (Image Comics)
For those stalking along, Nailbiter is written by Joshua Williamson, whose dialogue is fun, yet doesn’t suffer from the over-hokies. A town full of serial killers, and this one guy somehow got a not guilty verdict when he is so obviously guilty. Yes, that one guy is the titular Nailbiter, and it appears he is in grave peril. He loves to chew people’s fingers off, who have a proclivity for chewing their nails. And ya see, the kitsch murder store in town, well, there was a body tied to the sign… a dead body with its fingers seemingly chewed off. Williamson has a knack for writing action scenes, and is able to hop from a manic chase to a scene in a morgue where Sheriff Crane and Officer Finch are wondering aloud about the killer.
The art by Mike Henderson is okay, though everyone seems to have a Hapsburg jaw. His panel to panels leaps are sometimes confusing as well. For instance, where did this dude get stabbed?
Like, was it in the stomach? Did he just get punched by officer Finch? The art is cool otherwise, though. There’re some really great panels, like this one.
Is It Good?
I’ve been pleasantly surprised with this series, and this issue was fun. Williamson’s dialogue, pacing and general zeal seem to make up for the occasional motion-based confusion which arises every once in a while from Henderson’s art. All in all a solid read though, and the art is good enough to get the job done. Excited to see where this one goes.