Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Graphic Novel Review: Area 10

According to, Brodmann Area 10, or BA10 refers to the frontal cortex or the frontopolar region. This area is believed to play a part in the strategic processes involved in memory retrieval and executive function. That's where the title of this book comes from, and it's quite fitting. The story's a very neat concept of science and sci fi. Trying to achieve superhuman enlightenment through accessing that area of your brain. Sounds cool, right? Of course, the only way to achieve this, is drilling a hole in you're head. Are you still cool with that?

Area 10 is a great book. It tells the story of a detective, hunting down a mysterious serial killer. But this killer, who goes by the name Henry The Eighth, isn't just any ordinary serial killer, he likes to decapitate his victims. So naturally, the NYPD is trying their hardest to find this guy.

So enter detective Adam Kamen, who is working his tail off to find a lead. Well one day, he happens upon a crime in progress. This man is killing his family, by putting a screwdriver right through their foreheads. In a freak series of events, Mr. Kamen ends up with a screwdriver in his head. This injury, while strange, is not lethal, and this leads him on a whole other journey.

After recovery, Adam cannot sleep, and begins to hallucinate. As he tries to work this case again, he finds that jumping back in is harder than expected. As we learn more about his past, his mental stability gets questioned, as well as his motives for working this case so closely. As he dives deeper into this madness, he learns about the ancient practice of trepanation, the practice of gaining enlightenment through brain manipulation.

Christos N. Gage writes a great, intriguing story full of fun twists and turns. An artist Chris Samnee could not have been more perfect for this job, with his inks, sometimes beautifully haunting, perfectly reflecting the mood and insanity of this story. I would highly recommend this book, and hope all enjoy.

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