Ram V and Filipe Andrade offer up an absolutely tantalizing sample with the ‘Rare Flavours #1 Tasting Menu Ashcan’ from BOOM! Studios.
There are very few times in life where I am unable to contain my excitement. This is one of those times. I write this blurb in the middle of the night (shout-out to my newborn for keeping me up at unholy hours) having just read Eisner-nominated duo, Ram V and Filipe Andrade‘s Rare Flavours Tasting Menu Ashcan. Being content up until this point in playing the role of Editor here at houseofnerdshow.com, I find myself compelled to write my first “review”. This “review” being but a small serving, much like the ashcan. I am not a writer by any stretch of the imagination and so I will give it my best shot. Ram V’s works tend to have that effect. Makes me want to be a better reader, a better writer. Ok I’ll chill now. (But it’s true though).
Count me in, chef.
Rare Flavours is Ram V’s return to the Hindu mythological world of Rakshasa’s (see These Savage Shores). We are introduced to Rubin Baksh, an ancient demon/chef with a notorious past. This particular Rakshasa has goals of becoming the next Anthony Bourdain. A supernatural tale with a healthy serving of Parts Unknown? Yes, please. To make his dreams a reality, Rubin enlists the help of Mohan, a failed filmmaker, to document the ever resplendent cuisine and people of India. Resplendent. A word which could accurately describe Filipe Andrade’s art—even sans his colour work—as the Rare Flavours Ashcan offers up a taste without Filipe’s acclaimed colouring. Guess we’ll have to make due with just his Eisner nominated pencillings to look at. At least until the full issue drops on September 20th. However, if the small tease we are given is any indication, we are in for a savoury feast!
‘Rare Flavours #1 Tasting Menu Ashcan’ delivers the sweetest of appetizers.
Whetting our appetites with his signature flair for poetic elegance, Ram V opens up Rare Flavours with a quiet reflective moment, cleverly using an art gallery as the backdrop to clue in the reader on Rubin’s storied history, before quickly transporting us to the bustling vibrance of Pondicherry India. Even without Filipe Andrade’s colouring, the beauty and diversity of the environment can clearly be seen. In fact, his pencils are so detailed, that one can almost “hear” the sounds of the landscape. The artwork certainly has the effect of making me want to walk the city streets alongside cuisinier Rubin in search of the perfect meal. That is, until I get another good look at Mr. Baksh, and reminded just how unsettling a walk it would be.
Table d’hôte for three.
Lettering studio AndWorld Design once again joins Ram and Filipe on Rare Flavours. Providing impressive lettering reminiscent of the team’s previous project together, the font choice lends an intimate vibe to the whole affair, all the while remaining unintrusive, allowing Filipe’s exceptional pencils to shine. The creative synergy is oh so delectable. I suspect readers will require second, third and even fourth helpings of this planned six issue series. Much like The Many Deaths of Laila Starr, Rare Flavours looks to be a masterpiece in the making.
The Rare Flavours #1 Tasting Menu Ashcan is available August 16th from BOOM! Studios. This ashcan is strictly limited to its first printing, never to be printed again, so be sure to get your hands on a copy!
Rare Flavours #1 arrives in shops September 20th, 2023.
FOC is August 21st. Diamond code: JUL230018
Want more Ram & Filipe content? We’ve got you! Check out our interview with the powerhouse creative duo as they accept multiple awards for The Many Deaths of Laila Starr at the 2021 NERDIES Comic Book Awards! Conveniently time-stamped for you below!