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The Wake

(The Wake #1-10)

3.64  ·  Rating details ·  3,132 ratings  ·  430 reviews
New York Times bestselling author, Scott Snyder (American Vampire, Batman, Swamp Thing) and artist Sean Murphy (Punk Rock Jesus, Joe The Barbarian), the incredible team behind the miniseries American Vampire: Survival of the Fittest, are reuniting for the powerful miniseries: THE WAKE. When Marine Biologist Lee Archer is approached by the Department of Homeland Security fo ...more
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published November 11th 2014 by Vertigo
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Average rating 3.64  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,132 ratings  ·  430 reviews

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Nov 01, 2014 rated it liked it
I was pretty invested in the story for the majority of this book.
It kind of ran off the rails toward the finish line, and (in my opinion) never really recovered the momentum it had during the first half.
The ending?
I'm not even sure what the hell happened...

So, it starts off in present day (or the past, depending on how you look at it) with a cetologist whale/dolphin/porpoise expert named Lee Archer. She gets an offer she can't refuse from a government agentish guy, to help them with something th
Dec 23, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: comix
This book is divided into two parts: the comic book’s present and the comic book’s future.

The present section reads like The Incredible Mr. Limpet meets The Creature From the Black Lagoon. Not too bad.

The future reads likeWaterworld meets The Abyss and features my least favorite comic character – Talky von Talkerson.

“So Talky, this is a comic book, essentially a visual medium, what brings you here?”

“Well, Jeff, it seems that Scott Snyder wanted to include a ginormous amount of background materia
Jan Philipzig
Rethinking Genre Conventions

Snyder and Murphy deliriously experiment with a bunch of sci-fi, horror and pirate tropes, deconstructing and then reassembling them in different, more courageous and holistic ways.

The moral of the story brings to mind something legendary film director Stanley Kubrick once said:
“The most terrifying fact about the universe is not that it is hostile but that it is indifferent, but if we can come to terms with this indifference, then our existence as a species can have g
Sam Quixote
Aug 04, 2014 rated it it was ok
I read and reviewed The Wake Part One (collecting #1-5) in November 2013 and read Part Two (collecting #6-10) recently so I’ve compiled both reviews into this one for the complete 10-issue collected edition. I know, a bad Scott Snyder comic! Well, it had to happen eventually.


The Wake Part One Review

Dr Lee Archer is a cetologist and a single mother who’s approached by a shady government agent to take part in a secret underwater operation to identify the source of a strange sound off the Alaskan
[WARNING: Some spoilers may be at work.]

2.5/5 Stars

For me, the only thing confusing about 'The Cabin in the Woods' was why the bureaucrat in charge of feeding teenagers to the elder gods gave a flying fuck about Mermen. Of all the monsters and mutants and demons and kaiju stalking the ten thousand sub-levels of the Cabin, the multitude of archetypal horrors that have dwelled in The-Darkness-Beyond-The-Fire's-Glow since the Paleolithic... why a fucking Merman? Mermaids and Mermen are the least in
Apr 14, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018, library
Will post review later.
Jul 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Snyder harpoons a fascinating monster of deep sea horror, fantasy, and post-apocalyptic science-fiction. Complaints of an abstract ending are unfounded—it’s delightfully interpretative in an age of excessive literary hand-holding.
David Schaafsma
Strong female main characters, including a cetologist (whale scientist!) trying to save the world. We're fighting sea monsters, in what is a basically all sea adventure story with some huge environmental implications, finally (though climate change is not the culprit here…sorry, fellow environmentalists!). (Sam Quixote says the first half is Synder's take on The Abyss, the second half his take on Water World, which is smart and funny and about right, I think). Snyder says he got the idea for it ...more
Feb 10, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: comics, vertigo
OK I'm still on indies...yup.


So, Scott Snyder, pretty darn good writer, never embarrasses himself, always seems to have things thought out 5 steps ahead, much like his Batman...well I am here to tell you amigos...Mr. Scott done gone and fell upon his ass here.

Something can be great, really interesting, suspenseful, and have you wanting more...The Wake did that. It was like the best parts of The Abyss and Alien mashed up. I loved that the strong main character was female, kudos for that for sure.
Jan 26, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: comics, sci-fi
Scott Snyder was certainly ambitious in this story. But, like Icarus, his ambition causes him to flame out.

The Wake is a modern update to the Merman story (as American Vampire was to the Vampire tale). But then it also becomes a story of aliens and a grand conspiracy. Sounds like a lot? It is. The threads that bind this plot together seemed frayed. The mediocre art does not help. Sean Murphy's art adds nothing to the story and while it does a decent job with some large scene panels, it's the res
Jedi JC Daquis
Jan 30, 2017 rated it really liked it
Seriously, couldn't these Mer creatures deliver a message through I dunno, a courier or something? Why do they have to do these great deal of destruction and damage to the dry lands just to make a point? I know Snyder have explained it in something like "they do this flood deluge thing so that we won't forget where we came from", but yeah, I don't buy their way of giving a message. The Mer could hallucinate their way through our hearts and let the humans find a way peacefully to that twist in th ...more
Michael Emond
Nov 26, 2014 rated it it was ok
Well that was a confusing mess of an ending. The Wake does NOT live up to its promise and in the end we get a jumbled half-assed sci-fi story that makes absolutely no sense the way it is explained. The ending felt like Snyder was doing drugs and it made perfect sense to him in his mind but he couldn't translate it into meaning when sober. I'm not saying Snyder does drugs, I'm saying maybe if I did enough drugs the whole story would make sense.

First half (issues 1-5) A little horror story of som
Sep 15, 2014 rated it it was ok
Very disappointing series that starts off strong and gets worse and worse as it goes on. The first part is primarily a survival horror story involving a group of people stranded on a secret underwater drilling station/base, while mer-men (mer-creatures?) attack. It was fairly effective and had me wondering what was going to happen next. But then (big surprise), the story leaps ahead about two hundred years into a dystopian future, after the mer-creatures have somehow managed to melt the polar ic ...more
May 26, 2015 rated it it was amazing
The ending of the book reminds us that it's all an adventure. It doesn't specifically refer to the book itself, but...what an adventure it was. Snyder has sufficiently impressed with American Vampire before, but this is a thoroughly original story and he really spins it. The art is amazing too, but the plot is really star here. Snyder destroys and entire world and then creates an entire world, all with great panache and imagination. And then he throws in seriously horrifying sea creatures, mytho ...more
Aldo Haegemans
Aug 24, 2017 rated it liked it
Looking at my Original scores for the single issues this would have been a 4/5 But I can't... that ending was one of the most far fetched, confusing, complicated and let down endings I have read So far in a comic. It Just started off as a Nice horror book But then it got all scifi and complicated as They never really gave a proper explanation for the pirates or the mercs, too much complicated dialogue...
'kris Pung
Aug 04, 2014 rated it liked it
3.5 out of 5 stars

Damn really liked this horror book right up to the ending which was um pretty bad a a complete cop out in my opinion. I'd recommend this one for horror and Snyder fans and folks that like weak ends.
I am going to keep this review extremely brief because I had to read this graphic novel for school and while I loved the first half of the book I was extremely furious and disappointed with the second half and the pathetic ending. I am sorry I cannot give a proper review because I want to forget that I read this graphic novel and not retain any of the details because I felt like I sincerely wasted my time on this epic failure. I read this months ago and yet I did not want to write a review for t ...more
Jan 15, 2015 rated it really liked it
I have become a huge Scott Snyder fan. His work on American Vampire has filled the emptiness in graphic novel horror stories that was left over by end of 30 days of Night. So it was some fanboy eagerness that I picked up the graphic novel collection of The Wake which compiles issues #1-10.

Marine Biologist Lee Archer is offered an opportunity to study a new threat at the deepest depths of the Artic Circle. At the bottom of the ocean, aboard a ghost rig, a creature is captured. A mer-man. But Arch
JL Shioshita
I read this because it sounded like it was going to be some badass, underwater, science fiction, survivors in a sardine can, horror story. And it did start out that way. After the first few issues, I'm thinking to myself, man I love Leviathan. This is gonna be like Leviathan, but in comicbook form. Then all of a sudden it wasn't. It wasn't that at all. The rug was pulled out from under me. The shift was abrupt and jarring. It took all I had to keep reading. But okay, fine, Waterworld isn't nearl ...more
This started off fantastic but ended up confusing the hell outa me towards the end. The artwork is nice and I love the story itself except for the confusing ending. The end was too rushed. This could have been a few chapters longer and not have one page full of rushed, confusing answers.

I was going to give this 2 stars but raised it to 3 because I loved how unique and creepy the mermaids are. :)
Jun 28, 2020 rated it liked it
10 issues broken into two 5 issue parts. Part one, Dr. Lee Archer is recruited by a government agency to go to a base in Alaska to study these strange sounds. Upon arrival she realizes some things were left out. Like working in a secret illegal oil rig at the bottom of the ocean and the fact the they have captured some creature that no one knows what it is. The threat level rises from here and pushes our characters to a terrible demise.

Part 2 picks up 200 years later and the people who exist no
Aug 31, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: graphic-novels
The setup is strong, but then The Wake covers way too much ground far too quickly. Each half of the series has its own world building and exposition, which made an otherwise good story a little tedious.
Peter Derk
Apr 04, 2016 rated it liked it
This story started awesome and then turned weird. And not the good kind of weird with like, I don't know, aliens that look like huge ballsacks. Weird where you kind of don't know what's going on, and kind of don't care. I found myself reading the ending, knowing that I didn't really understand what was happening, but also not giving a hot damn. You could just feel it was one of those endings that's like, "Look, I wrote myself into a bit of a corner, but it's the journey, not the destination, rig ...more
Nov 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics
I was not sure what to expect and I got nicely surprised. All along the story things happen that are unexpected and it's hard to see where Scott Snyder wants to take us but in the end the ride is well worth it. You just have to let yourself be carried away and be ready for a few crazy things.( I did not see the end coming at all).
The art is good and it's nice to see Sean Murphy paired again with Scott Snyder after their previous American Vampire Survival of the Fittest collaboration.
One comment
Oct 07, 2014 rated it liked it
Okay like WHAT? In the beginning I was all like hell yes!!! The middle I was like hmmmm I need help figuring this shit out. The ending... ????
My brain hurts.
However the beginning was amazing. The artwork was amazing. So 3 stars.
Mar 16, 2017 rated it it was ok
wtf did i just read? i even stayed up late for this.

Nov 24, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Excellent on all fronts: original story, good characters and great art.
David Yoon
Jan 22, 2019 rated it liked it
Wanted some more of Sean Murphy's work after his impressive run on Batman: White Knight. I love his scratchy kinetic style and this earlier work did not disappoint.

But it's such a comic. Snyder leans into the tropes. The first half is a rag-tag group of experts (naturally) in their respective fields taken miles underwater to a secret sea base (of course) where they've captured (I'm sure that'll last) a menacing mer-man (Hadley from The Cabin in the Woods would be so pleased!) and you know all t
Jun 24, 2018 rated it liked it
I found the first half very enjoyable - a horror story involving a merman monster and a group of scientists was maybe not so inventive or original, but it was certainly interesting. However, the same cannot be said about second part. The story got more creative (maybe too much) but also more confusing and just bonkers. It was hard to follow and the ending was very anticlimatic in all the confusion and half-assed explanation.

The art was The Bomb though.
GrilledCheeseSamurai (Scott)
Jul 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: comics, vertigo
I have read the first few story arcs that Scott Snyder has done for Batman. I liked them, they were a lot of fun and I enjoyed his story telling well enough.

The thing is...I'm not a real big superhero guy. Don't get me wrong, I keep up on them, and follow my favorites, but Marvel and DC are kinda like candy for me. The real meat and potatoes I get from creator owned work and the more Indie side of comics.

Its just always been more my cup of tea.

So, of course, I was excited when I first heard abou
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Scott Snyder is the Eisner and Harvey Award winning writer on DC Comics Batman, Swamp Thing, and his original series for Vertigo, American Vampire. He is also the author of the short story collection, Voodoo Heart, published by the Dial Press in 2006. The paperback version was published in the summer of 2007.

Other books in the series

The Wake (10 books)
  • The Wake #1
  • The Wake #2
  • The Wake #3
  • The Wake #4
  • The Wake #5
  • The Wake #6
  • The Wake #7
  • The Wake #8
  • The Wake #9
  • The Wake #10

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