Red Room: The Antisocial Network

Fantagraphics. Oct. 2021. 160p. ISBN 9781683964681. pap. $19.99. GRAPHIC NOVELS
Cartoonist and podcaster Piskor (Ed Piskor: The Fantagraphics Studio Edition) presents a series of interconnected stories exploring the creators, fans, and victims of a series of websites devoted to livestreaming murder and torture videos. In the volume’s longest tale, Davis Fairfield, a seemingly mild-mannered, recently widowed courthouse clerk with a penchant for voyeurism, is courted by the producers of Pentagram Pictures; he’s eventually reborn as the Decimator, the studio’s most creatively brutal star. When Davis’s teenage daughter becomes concerned about his behavior, she embarks on an ill-fated investigation that brings her face to face with an evil beyond her imagination. Meanwhile, the creator of a powerful encryption software searches his own soul after discovering that the technology responsible for his vast wealth has also allowed the Red Rooms (the site of the torture) to flourish. Piskor pays homage to classic horror titles like William Gaines and Al Feldstein’s Tales from the Crypt in the best and most narratively satisfying story here, in which a garishly clad figure narrates a young tattoo artist’s journey to track down the creators of a video depicting her father’s murder.
VERDICT While many readers may find the explicit violence displayed here repellent, aficionados of extreme horror and splatterpunk will thrill as nearly every page-turn reveals increasingly gruesome shocks.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing