Mycroft Holmes: The Apocalypse Handbook by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Raymond Obstfeld, Joshua Cassara, Luis Guerrero and Simon Bowland (graphic novel review).

The smarter and randier brother of the more well-known Sherlock has his own series. ‘Mycroft Holmes: The Apocalypse Handbook’ is the first graphic novel written by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Raymond Obstfeld with art by Joshua Cassara, colours by Luis Guerrero and letters by Simon Bowland and is combined from the single-issue comics from last year.

When Mycroft is called upon by no less a personage than Queen Victoria herself, he must take up the challenge of tracking down the plans for some awful biological weapons. Along the way, he picks up a few companions and does some daring deeds. The Apocalypse Handbook was created after ideas for a brave new world from many distinguished ‘futurists’ were perverted into weapons of mass destruction by Victoria’s scientists. Now the blueprints are in the hands of even more treacherous people and Mycroft is charged with getting them back. Regrettably, some of the blueprints have already been weaponised so it will be quite dangerous.

Thus, follows a tale of derring-do quite unlike a Sherlock Holmes novel with added humour, nudity and some gruesome pictures of the various biological weapons with some added gore and bloodshed. All in a day’s work for Mycroft Holmes.

This graphic novel follows on from Abdul Jabbar and Anna Waterhouse’s original ‘Mycroft Holmes’, its witty and fun with some glorious artwork. It manages to overcome the difficulty of getting enough but not too many words on the page. The pilot is not too complex but does manage to wrap some familiar people up in it along with historical characters both famous and infamous.

Mycroft Holmes is good material for a graphic novel being highly visual, especially in the gory department. It has wit and appeal and the character of Mycroft is charming and a little bit louche. A bad boy in the service of the State.

Sue Davies

October 2017

(pub: Titan Comics. 128 page softcover graphic novel. Price: £ 9.99 (UK). ISBN: 978-1-78585-300-5)

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