Wibbly Wobbly, Timey Wimey: Gideon Falls #14

by Brendan M. Allen

“Stations of the Cross,” Part Three After a near fatal encounter, Father Burke finds himself in “The Village,” an eerie place where the people seem to worship Norton Sinclair and leave him with more questions than answers… at least until an old (and we mean REALLY old) Doctor shows up.

Where to even start with Gideon Falls #14? So far, the closest guy to figure this whole mess out is Father, er, Bishop Burke, and he barely has any idea what’s going on. Waking up in…Gideon Falls, just not his, Burke discovers that he’s been there before, and he’s been promoted. The residents of this dimension hold the good bishop as a messianic figure, and see his return as fulfillment of prophecy. That’s not even the weirdest pop in this chapter. Not by a long shot.

Jeff Lemire’s script is brilliant. This is one of those stories that lets out just enough line to let you think you have a handle on the situation, before jerking the rod, setting the hook, and yanking you back in another direction. Over and over again. There are so many twists and turns, nothing makes sense, until two, three, or seven issues down the line. Chapter fourteen is slow and deliberate. Loads to take in, and then a big reveal.

Andrea Sorrentino and Dave Stewart continue deliver some of the most dynamic artwork in comics. Very rarely, a book comes along where the art is so married to the script, it’s nearly impossible to imagine one without the other. Gideon Falls lands squarely in this category. Fourteen chapters in, it feels really redundant to say these fellas are absolutely annihilating the artwork, but here we are.

Sorrentino’s non-linear visual storytelling brings a frenetic intensity to Lemire’s script. Panels within panels, torqued and twisted borders, unique perspectives, and insanely detailed backgrounds have become the visual signature of Gideon Falls. Stewart’s palette ties multiple dimensions together visually, while keeping their distinct identities separate.

True to form, Gideon Falls #14 answers a few questions and opens up another dozen or so. The more we learn, the more it seems like we’ve just scratched the surface. Something huge is building, and the pop has got to be just around the corner, right?  The pace has been maddeningly methodical, reveals well planned and brilliantly executed. Steady like a train, sharp like a razor.

Gideon Falls #14, Image Comics, released 19 June 2019. Created by Jeff Lemire (script) and Andrea Sorrentino (art). Color by Dave Stewart. Letters by Steve Wands. Variant Cover by Veronica Fish.

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