The Cabinet from Syzygy Publishing and Image Comics has us hankering for nostalgic vibes of the 1990s with a dash of fantastical adventure. Written by Eisner-nominated Jordan Hart (Ripple Effects) and co-writer David Ebeltoft (Here Alone), alongside the wonderful illustrations of Chiana Raimondi, The Cabinet promises a journey like no other — a slice of our childhood with a quirky, contemporary twist for good measure.
We’re introduced to the protagonists of our tale — Avani Patel, an atypical teen oozing with intelligence and curiosity, and Trent McCormick, the quintessential midwestern jock with a heart of gold. Avani’s intellect proves an intriguing match to Trent’s brawn as the two teleport through a post-Cold War era, collecting the most bizarre relics you can fathom. Their goal? To summon the arcane powers of a 17th-century cabinet, not to make wishes, but to rid themselves of a colossal oopsie. You see, Avani’s last magic trick with the cabinet unleashed ancient evils, dusting her parents and all, which totally puts that bad report card in context, right?
Raimondi’s illustrations are nothing short of a masterclass in how to bring a fantastical world to life on a page. The use of color is psychedelic, transporting readers to a realm where neon meets noir, saturating every panel with an air of whimsical danger. The character design is sharp and definitive, with each expression and movement telling a story within the story.
If you were raised by the glow of CRT monitors, VHS tapes and trapper keepers, then The Cabinet is a love letter to your formative years. It’s evident throughout the characters’ dialogue, the art style, and even in the choice of adventure. It feels like a cultural touchstone for Saved by the Bell fans looking for a magical tome in Bayside’s school library. It embraces its ’90s roots proudly, playing at nostalgia without being imprisoned by it.
The Cabinet is an exuberant beginning to what promises to be a series as impressive as the cabinet’s powers. The Cabinet #1 hits local comic shops on February 14, 2024 from Syzygy Publishing / Image Comics.