“Notions of day and night no longer have any sense here. Only our brief moments of slumber allow us to mark our progress. As if everything in this world seemed continuous, permanent. For while there’s no cycle to form a rhythm in this subterranean universe, nothing here remains identical very long.”
TITLE & AUTHOR: Satania by Fabien Vehlmann (writer), Kerascoët
GENRE: Graphic Novel/Fantasy/Horror/Adult
PUBLISHED : November 1st 2017, by NBM Publishing
MY RATING: 4/5
Beautiful, Fascinating, and Dark
This graphic novel is the second interesting collaboration between Fabien Vehlmann and the Kerascoët illustrating duo. I already mentioned the first one, Beautiful Darkness, and as I said – I absolutely loved it, so I decided to give Satania a go too. Though not as weird and cute (this one is aimed for adults), Satania is a truly marvelous graphic novel about a group of people trying to find an underground passage to Hell, and then getting utterly lost in its weirdness and complexity.
A small expedition, brought together by a young read-head girl Charlie, plunges deep in underground caverns led only by unclear and maddening instructions left by Christopher – Charlie’s brother. Christopher disappeared underground several months ago, on a dangerous journey to prove his theory of the existence of Hell by using Darwin’s theory of evolution. Now a group of people, including a priest, a scientist, an accountant, and others, follows in Christopher’s footprints to try and find him.
Straightaway they get plunged into another part of the cave, from which they cannot go back. On their way down, they will discover some of Christopher’s theories might have been correct, even though they were all skeptical about it. Traces of a human civilization unknown to them begin to show early on.
They discover a settlement of people who withdrew deep underground almost a century ago and created their own utopia. But still no sign of Christopher, so the group delves even deeper, and deeper they go the tension starts to build, and the worst surfaces in some of them. How far will their madness go, how deep are they prepared to descend and will they ever find Christopher and get back on the surface?
I really liked this novel, even though it’s not short – 128 pages are filled with amazing graphics and a truly compelling story. I liked their first collaborative piece much more, but this one was an enjoyment of another kind. It’s not that scary, but it is filled with graphic and bizarre content and certainly not suitable for younger readers.