Clive Barker’s Nightbreed Issue 4: See Midian Fall
Cover Price: $1.95
Written by: Alan Grant and John Wagner
Artist: Jim Baikie
Letters by: Michael Heisler
Editor: Gregory Wright
Consulting Editor: Daniel Chichester
Exectutive Editor, Epic Comics: Carl Potts
Adapted from the screenplay by Clive Barker.
Warning: The following review contains major spoilers regarding both the film and comic Nightbreed
The war for survival of the Nightbreed has begun again, as the Shere Neck police and lynch mob open fire on the denizens of Midian. Decker unleashes his true self, and Lylesburg unleashes the berserkers.
As the final issue of the Nightbreed film adaptation, this issue is extremely light on story, and heavy on action. Every page, every panel is jammed full of the chaos and destruction that has befallen Midian because of Boone. The main focus of the issue is on Boone, Lori, Decker and the Sherriff. Boone is busy fighting off the mob while also trying to rally the Nightbreed and save the children, while Lori is pursued by Decker.
The end of this issue is considerably different from that of the movie, in this version of the story, Narcisse is beheaded by Decker in the fighting, Lori kills herself and forces Boone (now Cabal) to change her into Nightbreed so they can be together forever, and Ashbury doesn’t resurrect Decker, he instead murders Sherriff Eigerman while still proclaiming his desire to destroy the Nightbreed, and the final page still involves the remaining Nightbreed hiding in a barn, awaiting Cabal’s return to lead them to their new home, and as this issue ends, it’s clear that Cabal and Lori will be back.
By far this is my favorite of the initial four issues of this series, as it manages to give the big Hollywood action ending with the infinite budget of the artist’s pen. The overall flow of the issue is better than the ending of the film, as there are no unanswered questions at the end of this issue, we know that Cabal and Lori will rejoin the Nightbreed in time, and that Ashbury will (more than likely) return to exact his vengeance upon them, and because this is a comic series, if you were reading these issues when they were initially released, you only had to wait a couple of months for the next issue to arrive.
The differences between these first four issues of Nightbreed and the film they are adapted from are clear from the beginning, but it’s these differences that make the comic such a unique part of the Nightbreed mythology, expanding on characters and settings that were only briefly touched upon in the film. More than likely this adaptation was based on an early draft of the Nightbreed screenplay, as there are scenes in these first four issues that don’t appear in the film, and vice versa.