It can’t be possible for someone in this day and age to call themselves a horror fan and have not heard of Adam Green’s Hatchet or Tim Seeley’s Hack/Slash. These two juggernauts of the genre have their fans and critics alike. Like them or not though they’ve become staples for horror film and comics in the past decade, and it was only a matter of time before these two got to butt heads.
Based on a story by Seeley and Green, Benito Cereno scripted a pretty good fight between the two fan favorites. However, there is room for improvement. Instead of feeling like an actual melding of the two it seemed like Victor Crowley took a back seat to Cassie and Vlad, being treated more like the prototypical antagonist of a Hack/Slash book than working as a “co-star.” It’s still so awesome to see the characters of Hack/Slash touching on the lore of Hatchet, however.
The actual story of the comic was a big surprise. Going in I had no idea how Cassie and Crowley would meet but I was glad to see a slight deviation from the Hatchet movies’ cookie cutter plot. Sure there are segments that feel like they were cut out from your typical slasher movie and pasted in the book, but it really has its own mold of a story in comparison to what I was expecting.
Fans of the Hatchet films though will be glad to see Crowley’s use of some of our favorite weapons that he’s crafted in the movies, including his eponymous hatchet. This was an aspect of the story that could have been extended. Yes, Crowley has some good dispatches for those that he encounters, but none of them felt as fresh or creative as the kills seen in the films. There is a nice evolution included within the book of the Crowley mythos, and I’m anxious to see how Green incorporates it into the future installments (if he does at all). Also make sure to look for the Easter eggs.
Another thing I was really looking for in the book that didn’t meet my expectations was the eventual clash of our titular characters. Yes, there is a confrontation between them but it doesn’t get taken up to “eleven.” It similarly follows the pattern of the films with quickly inconveniencing Crowley while everyone runs away. There’s never a moment of no-holds-barred fisticuffs. Though the brief exchanges are cool, I wanted to see an all-out brawl.
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