Clue: Candlestick #1 Is A Strangely Compelling Adaptation Of A Board Game

by Josh Davison

[*Mild Spoilers Ahead!]

Professor Plum receives a letter from his old friend, Boddy. Boddy is afraid that someone is trying to kill him and invites Plum to his estate. Along with Plum and Boddy are Mustard, White, Scarlet, Green, and Peacock. Everyone is there to help Boddy with his fears, and those fears prove valid when one of the attending guests is killed in front of the others. The survivors split into groups of two in order to track down the murderer and discern their intentions.

Clue: Candlestick #1 cover by Dash Shaw
Clue: Candlestick #1 cover by Dash Shaw

Clue: Candlestick #1 is a murder mystery story inspired by the long-lived board game, Clue. It’s brought to life by Dash Shaw and accompanied by a back-up story by Tom Hodler.

Whatever you’re expecting Clue: Candlestick to be, I can almost assure you it isn’t. It’s surprisingly ponderous, thoughtful, and even a little existential at times. Shaw fleshes out these archetypal characters from the game into something a bit more deep and interesting.

Quirky doesn’t begin to describe the tone or the characters. On some level, Clue: Candlestick seems to be aware that this cast of characters would be incredibly strange if expanded upon or inserted into real life, and Shaw rolls with it.

I can’t say I’m some kind of Clue enthusiast either. I was only 50% sure that this was actually based on Clue before reading it. But, what the hell. Board game-based narratives seem a little cash-grabby on the surface, but this one gels.

Clue: Candlestick #1 art and letters by Dash Shaw
Clue: Candlestick #1 art and letters by Dash Shaw

Shaw’s art style and color palette are quite distinct, quirky, and strange too. The composition of many of the panels rely upon close-ups on eyes, faces, and the odd surreal visual metaphor. It all works perfectly with the narrative tone.

Clue: Candlestick #1 is a strange yet compelling recreation of the board game’s general story and theme. It can get a little too cute and ponderous at times, but, in the end, I find myself inclined to recommend the comic. Feel free to check this one out.

Clue: Candlestick #1 comes to us from writers Dash Shaw and Tom Hodler, artist, letterer, and cover artist Dash Shaw, and variant cover artists Dash Shaw and Jed McGowan.

Final Score: 7/10

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: