Written By Jake Garner
Yes, oh yes. It’s quite true. Slayer, yes, as in the awesome thrash metal band fronted by Tom Araya, have delved into the world of comic books with their new three part series titled Slayer Repentless. The comic is published by Dark Horse Comics and is certainly not for the light hearted. Everything you would expect from a Slayer comic book is in fact in there, and some more after that. Repentless is loosely based around Slayer’s trilogy of music videos that accompany three tracks from the 2015 album of the same name. These three headbanging tracks include Repentless, You Against You and Pride in Prejudice. For those of you out there that have witnessed Slayer’s music videos, well then you know exactly what to expect.
At the helm of the three part project is writer Jon Schnepp. Schnepp is no newbie to the metal scene having served as director on adult cartoon Metalocalypse. In more recent years, coincidentally, around the same time as the Repentless album was released, Schnepp directed the documentary film, The Death of “Superman Lives”: What Happened? which looks closely at the axed Tim Burton film. Schnepp brings to the Repentless comic what the video trilogy is not capable of; a narrative to the violence. Essentially that’s what the videos are on face value, a mass of vengeance driven slaughter that revolves around the issues of race and fascist politics. On the surface the videos can be seen as unclear in their message, but Dark Horse Comics has certainly done well to clear this up. Schnepp writes to explain the ‘story’ behind the crazy brutality of the music videos.
In some ways I am still trying to work out which version is more blood fuelled. At this point I would have to sway towards the comic. Why? Well because the violence in the video trilogy is very quick and soon over, an image stays frozen in time forever. Artist Guiu Vilanova is no stranger to the gory nature of slasher comics, perhaps more known for his work on Dynamite’s Rise the Dead. He works to bring the video trilogy to life in the comic, bringing over every pool of red sticky stuff with it. All in all, I can’t guarantee that this comic will be for everyone. I am sorry I can’t vouch that much for it, but for the older Slayer fan, well you will not be disappointed. Repentless is packed with as much nostalgia as it is violence.