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Nailbiter: “Blood in the Water” (Image Comics, 2014; #11-15)

I’m going to keep this one short, because we talked about Nailbiter back in our Horror Spooptacular! episode and because there’s not a lot new to say without getting into spoilers.

If you missed that episode or want a refresher on the book’s premise, it is about a town called Buckaroo, Oregon, which has yielded a prodigious number of serial killers. Just before an FBI profiler goes missing while investigating why the town turns out murderers, he reaches out to an NSA Agent who decides to try to solve the mystery. It’s dark and bloody—and sometimes straight-up disgusting.

The third volume of the series continues to build momentum, and it sees some answers to to the book’s questions emerge. Those answers, in turn, raise more questions. Williamson also gives us more backstory for the book’s main characters. If it was not clear before that Nailbiter is intricately planned, revelations about how its moving parts connect eliminate any doubt on the matter.

Henderson and Guzowski’s art continues its dark, brooding imagery. In this arc, however, they kick the blood and guts up a notch. I’m not squeamish when it comes to comic art, but there images here that are absolutely stomach-turning.

I’m a big fan of Nailbiter, and it is one of the first titles I would recommend to someone looking for a horror book. If you are squeamish, you might have some trouble with it. But if you’re looking for a tightly plotted, suspenseful mystery, you should check it out.

Collected in

  • Nailbiter, Vol. 3: Blood in the Water (#11-15)


Writer: Joshua Williamson | Artist: Mike Henderson with Adam Markiewicz (12) | Colorist: Adam Guzowski | Letterer/Designer:  John J. Hill | Editor: Rob Levin

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