Verstild Leven – Comic Book Review
Follow Genre: Art, History, Mystery
Written by: Zidrou
Illustrations: Oriol
Coloring: Oriol
Publisher: Blloan

Verstild Leven – Comic Book Review

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Good: Art style, Story
Bad: Not for everyone
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Rating: 7.0/10 (1 vote cast)

Comic books posses a certain power, a power to visualize stories and make them something ‘out of this world’. Nonetheless, there are many that portray stories that actually happened, but make the story itself a bit more interesting by loosely following the facts, or by giving a certain spin to things, to make it just that much more mysterious. The latter is the case for the tale of a nearly forgotten artist of the 19th/20th century, Vidal Balaguer, who was said to be a prodigy of his time, but his quirky personality proved to be his downfall, and of course the fact he pretty much vanished into thin air. This comic book tries to shed a light on the last moments of Vidal’s known life.

Verstild Leven Banner

Many painters have their muses and Vidal proved to be no exception to that rule. He painted a beautiful girl, who he clearly fell in love with, and it felt like she felt the same way. Nonetheless, after the painting was made, she disappeared, leaving the painter restless, hoping to find her once again. Not only is the missing love of his life weighing down on him, he also has a massive debt, as he no longer receives money from his father, and his peculiar personality doesn’t allow him to sell his best paintings, as he clings to them as they are a part of himself. When someone is willing to buy his painting of the beautiful girl, he decides to take down the painting and store it safely in his apartment. When later on he learns that the man that showed an interest is actually a police officer, who is looking into the disappearance of the girl, and Vidal is a prime suspect, his mood sinks even deeper.

Even though the story is properly being sketched, the pace is rather fast, which is quite enjoyable for this tale. While at certain times there is a decent amount of text to plow through, with some additional information about the painter in the back, there are many panels which you can just enjoy without the usage of any words, but just the pictures themselves. Zidrou has a knack of finding the proper balance in the stories he writes, or in this case adapts, and once again he succeeds quite swimmingly.

The drawings used for this album are unique to say the least, as they resemble paintings themselves. When zooming in on Vidal’s paintings, they look more detailed, more realistic and have a lot more sketch lines to them, compared to the somewhat slick ‘painted’ art style used for the rest of the album. Said style creates a certain contrast with the paintings, which results in a wonderful looking album. It’s great to see this album being brought to life by Oriol, who is clearly an amazing and talented artist himself.


Verstild Leven takes a real story and gives it an original spin to make the mystery surrounding Vidal even bigger. If you’re into art, and love a good mystery story, this album is a ‘should have’ for your shelve, not only for its great storyline, the loveable real characters but also the unique art style used to bring this album to life.

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Verstild Leven - Comic Book Review, 7.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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