Fall of Cthulhu
"The silent hordes of sleeping Cthulhu are stirring, their arms raised in war against great Nodens and his heathen ilk. Their war will wake the Old One and usher in an age of darkness."
If the bigger they are, the harder they fall, then what happens when the gods themselves fall?
Fall Of Cthulhu is a comic book series published by Boom! and based on (and inspired by) the works of HP Lovecraft. The series follows a few unfortunate mortals as they're entangled in the conspiracies and manipulations of the Great Old Ones and the Outer Gods, who prepare for war against Nodens and the Elder Gods, and the apocalypse that will inevitably ensue. Said characters include academic turned mental patient Cy Morgan (whose uncle's research introduces the plot), Portuguese street rat Luci Jenifer Inacio das Neves (a.k.a. Lucifer), local sheriff in over his head Raymond Dirk, and lastly, the enigmatic hostel owner Mr. Arkham.
In its own way, the comic acts as a Crisis Crossover for the Cthulhu Mythos, gathering the classic elements from Lovecraft's fiction to mingle with whole new creations. Furthermore, each artist on the title brings his or her own brand of slightly off-kilter illustration, including subtle, yet effective Art Shifts whenever the bewildered human characters are dropped into the Dreamlands.
In addition to the first volume, Fall Of Cthulhu continues in two miniseries (Godwars and Apocalypse) and has spawned three spin-offs: Cthulhu Tales, a Lovecraft-grounded anthology title, Hexed, continuing Lucifer's misadventures in eldritch thieving, and a proper sequel, The Calling: The Cthulhu Chronicles.
- The Adjectival Man: The Gray Man
- Art Shift: A secondary artist was on-board during the comic's first volume specifically to illustrate the Dreamland sequences.
- Awesome McCoolname: Luci Jenifer Inacio das Neves. Or Lucifer, for short.
- Batman Gambit: This is the Harlot's preferred method of conspiracy. It helps that by being a keeper of secrets, she can sit back, relax, and wait for some desperate human to stumble into the Dreamlands looking for her help.
- Body Horror: Hope you don't have any paranoia about Morgellons disease.
- Canon Foreigner: The Harlot, the Grey Man, Gith, the Masked Mute, Sysyphyx (and her son) are all new creations by the comic's writer, although they fit well enough aside Lovecraft's designs that no one notices.
- Chekhov's Gun: The knife's only the most obvious one. It's far less important than the Harlot's boxes, or Nyarlathotep's true name.
- Corruption of a Minor: One issue featured a young boy going to a comic book shop for his birthday, and getting a "special present" from a very sexy woman: an empty box. It later turns out the box held the spirit of Gnruk of Vol' Kunast, who invades the boy's soul, slowly driving him psychotic until transforming him into a bat-like monstrosity.
- Cosmic Horror Story: Almost. We get right to the starting line of the God War, until the Harlot trumps Nyarlathotep's schemes and manages to avert great Cthulhu's awakening, all because she likes to play with humanity.
- Covers Always Lie: Not only does Cthulhu not fall, he's little more than a MacGuffin in the storyline, with a one-page cameo.
- Creepy Child: Jason used to be a normal kid who wanted to read a cool comic book. Then Sysyphyx gave him a box with nothing in it. Now Jason is going to learn how to fly...
- The Masked Mute, Sister of the Lost Abyss, looks like a regular female adolescent wearing a spooky mask, until you see what's behind it.
- Deal with the Devil: The Harlot is the keeper of secrets, and she'll give you the answers you seek... but always for a :
- Cy initially gives her his wisdom teeth in exchange for an answer, and then willingly gives up his whole body and climbs into one of her "boxes". He gets better... err, as better as one can get in a full-fledged Cthulhu story.
- Dirk gets one of the more heartbreaking ones, when in exchange for the location of the Gray Man's ceremonial blade, the Harlot takes all the memories of his dead wife.
- Dream Land: The titular Dreamlands, imported Lovecraft's other mythos. It's the primary stomping ground of the Outer Gods, the Harlot, and Nodens, and is accompanied by a trippy Art Shift in-comic.
- Driven to Suicide: Happens no less than three times in the first volume alone!
- Egomaniac Hunter: Nodens, arguably. He gets the wiggle room by account of him being an Elder God and thus, celestially opposed to the Old Ones and Outer Gods like Cthulhu and Nyarlathotep.
- Eldritch Abomination: It has Cthulhu's name in the title, folks. Do the math.
- Ensemble Darkhorse: The Harlot, a green-skinned mutant of a woman in a doll's outfit, is probably the closest we'll ever get to Fan Disservice in a Lovecraft story. That she out-manuevered Nyarlathotep and manipulated the entire cast might have something to do with it, too.
- Flat What: Delivered by Nyarlathotep, even.
- Gambit Pileup: All the gods think they're playing each other like a fiddle, but in the end, it's the Harlot who plays the best instrument of all. Fortunately, she finds humanity amusing and would rather have us alive.
- Go Mad from the Revelation: The entire series starts after Cy's Uncle Walt has already done so, and by the end of the first storyarc Cy has gone off the deep end as well.
- The Harlot tries to do this to Lucifer as punishment, showing her how the world will end.
- Grand Theft Me: Sysyphyx can possess people by replacing their skull and spine, and the Gith took on Connor's body as a vessel.
- Grandpa God: Nodens, per Lovecraft's original description in the short story The Strange High House In The Mist.
- High Octane Nightmare Fuel: The ultimate price for some of the Harlot's knowledge? You crawl into a box that, willpower utterly destoryed, and stay there, for all eternity, unless the Harlot wants you out. In other words, it's a sensory deprivation tank owned and controlled by an Eldritch Abomination.
- Connor's gift to the Old Ones? Letting his body be used as a vessel for one of them, after his brain and eyes have been plucked out of it. Connor's punishment for trying to escape from this fate? He gets to stare at his disembodied brain and eyes in a mirror until his body is no longer needed. Provided he can stay sane.
- Hunting the Most Dangerous Game: The true impetus of the story is due to the Elder God Nodens wanting to hunt the biggest game of 'em all — Cthulhu! Except Cthulhu's the bait, and Nyarlathotep the real prey.
- Nodens' followers are also prone to doing this, as seen in the first volume, when they release a man into the woods so that they can hunt him down.
- I Have Many Names: Stated almost verbatim by Mr. Arkham in the first chapter. Three geusses as to who Mr. Arkham really is.
- Implacable Man: The Gray Man, the "patron saint" of human sacrifice. All he needs to do is breathe on you, and you won't be looking in the mirror anytime soon.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: The Harlot takes Raymond Dirk's memories of his dead wife as payment for the information he needs. When Ray returns from the Dreamlands, he doesn't recognize the woman on the pictures in his wallet.
- It ends up saving his life when Sysyphyx impersonates his wife to confuse him. Not remembering his wife, he has no problem killing the lookalike.
- Living Bodysuit: Mr. Arkham, the oddly benevolent man who aids Cy in the first chapters, is none other than Nyarlathotep, the Crawling Chaos.
- Lovecraft Country: Arkham, Massachusetts, of course.
- Madness Mantra: In the second storyarc, a young boy named Jason keeps muttering the words "knees first, head second" after opening a box given to him by a very pretty lady. This turns out to be instructions on how to kill someone with a baseball bat.
- Sarcastic Devotee: Connor, Mr. Arkham's right hand man.
- Street Urchin: Lucifer could either live (and get killed) as a pick-pocket in Rio, or go to work assisting a professor gaining the attention of the Great Old Ones. Unfortunately, she chose the only path worse than being killed in a Brazilian gang war.
- The Un-Reveal: The identity of the girl in the crowd. She's the one behind everything.
- Unusually Uninteresting Sight: You'd think a mother would frown on her seven year old receiving a gift from a woman whose breasts are barely contained in her corset. You'd be wrong, apparently.
- Xanatos Roulette: What the Harlot's grand scheme looks like after the conclusion of Apocalypse. Justified, for she's an Eldritch Abomination that makes it her business to know everybody's secrets, including the gods'.