Pine and Merrimac #1 is intense and efficiently written, with solid artwork to flesh out the world. The characters feel like old friends to readers, while the tale is full of foreshadowing.

Review: A New Duo Is On The Case In PINE AND MERRIMAC #1

It’s time to dive into a new world full of crime, missing people, and more. You don’t want to miss this one if you’re a fan of true crime, sardonic characters, or private detective takes. Pine and Merrimac #1 is the first in a new series by Kyle Starks, Fran Galán, and Pat Brosseau, out this week from BOOM! Studios.

Pine and Merrimac #1
Time to meet this new duo in Pine and Merrimac #1.

Is there anything better than a crime-fighting duo? How about a devoted husband and determined wife tackling a few cases? The couple in question are the Kents; they run Pine and Merrimac. Linnea Kent is turning her skills as a homicide detective into a new career — running a private detective business. This way, she can pick and choose her clients. Her loving husband Parker is happy to offer all the support he can. Since he was once a professional MMA fighter, most of his support comes in the form of muscle. Talk about a match made in heaven. Sort of.

Pine and Merrimac #1 is the first in a five-issue miniseries from the minds of Kyle Starks (I Hate This Place, Creepshow), Fran Galán (The Amazing Spider-Man), and Pat Brosseau. So, if you’re looking for something slightly different with sinister undertones, this will be the series for you.

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Pine and Merrimac #1
Linnea and Parker are the power couple of 2024. Prove me wrong.


Pine and Merrimac #1 wastes no time introducing us to the lives of Linnea and Parker Kent. Within the first few pages, readers are given a brief rundown of their histories (individual and as a couple). While the series does throw us into the deep end for the characters, it doesn’t feel rushed. There’s this sense of time within the relationship, making it clear that this couple will last.

Admittedly, that feeling does add a bit to the foreshadowing nature of the series. Will something happen to the couple, or will they power through this mystery? Only time will be able to give us that answer, but it’s enough to get readers invested in the meantime.

It would be easy for Pine and Merrimac #1 to get lost in the tragic backstory of Linnea’s past. But it doesn’t. While it delves into darker tones (missing person cases are rarely a bubbly read), the strong sense of love and commitment resonating between our leading pair helps to add a unique sort of levity to the situation. Or perhaps it’s hope?

Kyle Starks’ writing style is effective, to say the least. In a single issue, we are introduced to new characters who feel like old friends, the world, and even the stakes. That leaves the following four issues to focus on the mystery at hand.

Pine and Merrimac #1
A vibrant variant for what will likely be a darker tale in Pine and Merrimac #1.


Where Kyle Starks’ writing establishes the world, Fran Galán and Pat Brosseau bring it to life. The artwork in Pine and Merrimac #1 evokes a visceral feeling at times, thanks to the heavy attention to detail.

The rougher edges of the line art lend well to the story; at times, it feels like the art is taking the words on the page and running away with them. Combine this with the character expressions (there’s no need to wonder if these two are in love), and you’ve got a fleshed-out world begging to be read.

The colors set the tone — almost literally at times. The colors inside these pages are almost a playful blend, one moment being vibrant, the next subdued. In particular, the coloring excels at visual cues, such as signifying the beginning of a flashback.

As for the lettering, well, it’s safe to say that Pat Brosseau knows when to hold back and when to go with the flow. There are a few occasions for a more creative take on the lettering, and it helps to increase the impact of the world (pun not intended, but appreciated).

Pine and Merrimac #1
There’s plenty of brains and brawn in Pine and Merrimac #1.


Pine and Merrimac #1 is a strong and compelling start to this series. It’s easy to see how readers will be drawn in. The darker tones and efficient storytelling style make it perfect for both experienced and inexperienced comic readers.

Cat Wyatt
Cat Wyatt
Cat Wyatt is an avid comic book fan. She loves comics - possibly too much, and will happily talk your ear off about everything she's reading. Though picking a favorite is a bit harder. She reads a little bit of everything and is always open to trying a new series.
Pine and Merrimac #1 is intense and efficiently written, with solid artwork to flesh out the world. The characters feel like old friends to readers, while the tale is full of foreshadowing. Review: A New Duo Is On The Case In PINE AND MERRIMAC #1