By Arpad Okay. Arthur Brut is a mad detective. Mad as in Brut was in an asylum. Detective as in the Mona Lisa is flirting with people and it’s driving them crazy and someone needs to find out why.

The Electric Sublime takes contemporary psychological dread, the horrors found in cult films like Suicide Circle, and channels it through the prism of the Louvre. It’s arthouse-grindhouse. And it’s up to Art Brut and Director Margot Breslin (and Art’s other partner, an artist’s mannequin named Manford) to unravel the mystery of the Winking Woman’s wave of mutilation.

Margot Breslin totally steals the show. Things are falling apart and her moves are cool and calculated. She’s logical in a world that isn’t. She is capable and still. Lithe and tall and willowy, a Mœbius Valkyrie dressed like Rick Deckard, gliding through the chaos. The whole world has become an artist’s mind, ripped open, and yet I trust her to keep us safe.

Cover to 'Electirc Sublime', courtesy of IDW Publishing. Art by Martín Morazzo.

Cover to ‘The Electric Sublime’, courtesy of IDW Publishing. Art by Martín Morazzo.

It comes as no surprise that something called The Electric Sublime wastes no time in throwing the rules away. What is unusual is that its hook reaches out of the fantasy and into the reader’s life. Something about that feels so much like the Sophisticated Suspense stories of comics past. Who isn’t familiar with the Mona Lisa? Obviously, a world where a painting looks right back at us isn’t our own — what’s more, its weird runs much, much deeper than what we find in these pages.

The first issue plays out as a series of astonishing reveals, each one a greater surprise than the one that came before, stacking up into a towering behemoth of a story. All of The Electric Sublime comes together to achieve what every debut should strive towards. The anticipation for the next issue to come out is overwhelming, but my imagination has been given so much fuel that I have more than enough to dream about between now and then.

IDW Publishing/$3.99

Written by W. Maxwell Prince.

Art by Martín Morazzo.

Colors by Mat Lopes.

Letters by Good Old Neon.

9 out of 10