Caught My Eye: Scar Tissue Volume One

A page from Scar Tissue
Dial R Studios

Scar Tissue is a small-press comic published by Dial R Studios. Now, when I say it’s “small press,” I don’t mean that it’s small on quality, because it’s quite the opposite.

So what is this comic about? Good question. It’s about a sick boy named Ben who is in a rough place. He’s needed a heart transplant for many years, and the time has come that he either gets one or he dies. Fortunately, one arrives in the nick of time. It comes with a catch, though: it belongs to a recently deceased supervillain named Lord Grundoom. With this new heart, Ben is able to heal more quickly than a regular heart recipient and begins to gain the powers of the late Grundoom. The book, written by Jim Clark and drawn by David Wachter, follows Ben as he comes to terms with these new powers and his struggle with the emotions and conflicts you might assume would occur.

The story is easy to get into. I quickly found myself interested in Ben’s predicament and wanted to keep reading more. Before I knew it, I had read half of the trade paperback. One of this comic’s biggest strengths is its dialog. That was the very first thing I noticed. The interaction between Ben and his brothers, as well as his internal struggles, is spot on. The way the characters interact with one another feels very natural, and it seems like you’re right there with them. There were only two characters that seemed kind of stiff to me, but everyone else could have been people I knew.

A lot of time is invested into the characters to make you care about them. That doesn’t mean the comic is slow by any means. After reading the first issue, you’re actually emotionally invested in them and want to keep reading for that reason alone. The pacing of the comic is even, so as you get going on a run with characterization, you get a dose of action to keep you interested.

Another aspect I enjoyed was the action scenes. The art was at its best when things were going down in a big way. When the octane gets pumping, the art kicks it into high gear. The last issue of the collection has some of the best action scenes I’ve seen in comics. One of my favorite things drawn in comics is vehicles (when they’re done well). There’s a scene where the whole page is dedicated to this very thing and is one of the best visuals I’ve seen in a long time. I don’t want to spoil it in any way, but you’ll know it when you see it. Trust me… It is damn awesome and I tip my hat to you, David Wachter!

Dial R Studios

Some of the characters that at first seemed kind of flat to me when there were slow moments had improved significantly by the third issue. It’s nothing bad, mind you, but I could see how he got into the groove as he went along.

I usually don’t notice the lettering in books, but I need to give it a shout out here. The use of the word balloons was pretty nifty, especially when it involved the villain. Another noteworthy aspect of the lettering was how the sound effects were shown. I was quite impressed once again during the action scenes.

Overall, I enjoyed Scar Tissue quite a bit. I’m still kind of new to the small-press scene, but I was impressed with this title and I can’t wait to see where the title goes from here. It ended in a nice little cliff-hanger, and I love it when I’m surprised by an ending.

Scar Tissue: Volume One collects the monthly issues #1 through #5. It will debut at the San Diego ComicCon next month and go for sale online shortly thereafter for $17.99. If you can’t make it to SDCC, you can obtain a copy at