Top Cow Productions/Image Comics 2016
Created, Written, Illustrated & Lettered by Raffaele Ienco
First of all I have the utmost admiration for anyone who can do it all as Raffaele does here. Not only is the story a good one but the interiors are gorgeous and they work in that special way only a creator can make them work in when doing it all alone. It has that feeling of scope and grandeur that he wants the reader to envision and he delivers it beautifully.
This is very a book you have to pay attention to when reading. It does go from one part of the story to another and they all tie together but it takes concentration and paying attention to to really understand what’s happening. I love that because you get so much more of an impact when you have to pay close attention. Even when there are no words as in the opening you have the complete sense of what’s happening thanks to what he bringing to the table. The use of pages, panels, angles and perspective alongside the use of the backgrounds are all instrumental to understanding what’s happening here.
When we see the old man and his dog scrounging for food in an abandoned city you get that something major has happened and that the world has been irrevocably changed. More than likely from what we saw in the previous pages and his references. It’s strong, powerful and leaves a desire to understand more fully what’s happened. And I can’t get over how good the interiors are I mean the white in his hair, his dog with it’s aging muzzle and all of it just has this weight to it that gives it that extra something special.
Then we meet partners Minelli and Gibbons. This new world still runs by old rules, such it’s not what you know or what you’ve accomplished it’s all about who you know. That’s made pretty clear here as we witness their conversation. The anger at being passed over for promotion after all Gibbons has accomplished leaves that sour taste in his mouth that’s relatable to. The angry man syndrome is understandable and hopefully something that will not continue to dominate his personality as his time in the story continues. I’d like to see the kind of man he is, that he promotes himself as instead. After all they say it’s the measure of the man and how he deals with adversity that makes him who he is.
There’s a final piece of the puzzle that we’re introduced to and it’s a robot. A mechanical man and his story is revealed through bits and pieces as the story progresses. He’s a wild card and what he can or will do is as of yet unknown but the partners, cops or military duo, know he’s there to observe. What Raffaele does with this is give the reader just enough to wonder without truly comprehending the full scope. This is great as it’s something that you keep looking for and want to understand better and comb over what’s happening around him. It also means you’ll be back to see what happens with it/him next. A prototype the only one of it’s kind near as I can tell and it seems to be a catalyst in the coming story.
It’s a brilliantly done science fiction/disaster/horror type story that blends the genres so well. You’ve got survivors out there alone and fighting for survival, creatures here to destroy mankind and a military style run civilisation that does what it can to ensure their own continued existence. How they all interconnect you’ll have to read the story to see but this is a bonafide thriller that’ll have you hooked from the get go.