First, you have to give Slayer credit for getting some mileage from their 2015 album Repentless. Released more than a year ago, and after the band completed an elaborate song trilogy of music videos and a world tour, we now have the Slayer Repentless comic. In fact, the three-issue comic run is a companion piece to the band’s video trilogy for the songs “Repentless,” “You Against You,” and “Pride in Prejudice.”

It’s an interesting concept. The band’s “Repentless” video was a huge success (more than 10 million views on YouTube), which spawned the storyline prequel and sequel videos for “You Against You” and “Pride in Prejudice,” respectively. Filling in the gaps of the storyline presented in the videos, the comic series expands on the narrative and characters of this brutal story that starts with a prison riot and ends in the murder of a pregnant woman.

This first issue of the three-part series is essentially the backstory to the eye-patched character (who is named “Wyatt,” as we learn in the comic) who breaks out of prison in the “Repentless” video and remains the focus of the subsequent videos. Not unlike the videos, the comic is violent, however not to the level of gory indulgence seen in the videos. This first issue is focused on developing Wyatt’s history (but also briefly includes some scenes from the videos to tie the narrative together), along with the prelude to the video trilogy and then the immediate aftermath.

All this is to say that Slayer themselves have very little presence in the comic, only appearing on the final two pages. There are plenty of references to them though, whether characters quote lyrics from “God Hates Us All,” “Angel of Death” playing in a bar, or a literal “Dead Skin Mask,” the comic stays true to the band’s overall vision and indulges their history and music appropriately.

Scripted by Metalocalypse’s Jon Schnepp, with art by Guiu Vilanova of Twilight Zone fame, this first issue of Slayers Repentless comic run is sure to satisfy the Slayer fans and collectors of their various projects and merch, as well as comic nerds in general. The story presented in this issue provides the answers to many questions the videos generated (like the Nazi connection, the pregnant woman, and how our main character lost his eye) and sets up the following issue with a turn in the story that provokes our anticipation for issue two.

Written by: Jon Schnepp (Writer), Guiu Vilanova (Artist), Glenn Fabry (Cover Artist)
Format/Length: FC; 32 pages
Publisher: Dark Horse Books (January 25, 2017)

Check out the “Repentless” music video