11.07.2013

11.06.13 [Weekly Reviews]

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Trillium #4 (DC/Vertigo): Trillium reminds me of the kind of classic science fiction that played around with time travel, future speculation, and tried to examine societal composition. It’s full of rich moments written and drawn by Jeff Lemire that juxtapose old and new, familiar and unknown, and has fun with age-old sci-fi tropes like language translators and the caustic nature of “we-them” paradigms. With the conflux of cultures and subdued love interests, for some reason it also kept reminding me of The Fountain, which saw both a graphic novel by Darren Aronofsky and Kent Williams, and eventually a film directed by Aronofsky starring Hugh Jackman and Rachel Weisz. The film bombed, but I liked it in both iterations as a time-spanning love story with stylized art. So, I guess if Warner Brothers ever exercises their option on adapting Trillium to film, I vote for Darren Aronofsky to direct. Rachel Weisz has the grit to play Nika, though I’d certainly find someone other than Hugh Jackman for the male parts. Grade A.

East of West #7 (Image): Before you realize what’s happening, this issue turns into an Ezra Orion origin story, and who knew that Jonathan Hickman and Nick Dragotta could make us care so much about this character in such a short span of time. Orion ultimately is responsible for building the Tower at Armistice, all in an effort to gain acceptance from his whacked out surrogate mother. Dragotta’s wide-eyed visuals and imaginative creature-tech is one of the most refreshing art offerings this year. I remain a fan of the way Hickman seems to be so fascinated with the end of the world and all things post-apocalyptic. There’s also a running theme about faith that I find interesting, and the visual of a baby nursing on blood is a moment I probably won’t shake any time soon. It all got me thinking about the western/sci-fi mélange and how it’d be neat if Pretty Deadly was some kind of perverse prequel to East of West, chronicling the Western elements pre-apocalypse, and then East of West picks up post-apoc with the incident at Armistice. Grade A.

Alex + Ada #1 (Image): If you were running down a checklist of how to make a solid comic, Jonathan Luna would tick off most of the boxes in this introductory issue, yet it didn’t really work for me, as the sum of the parts never seemed to add up to anything more grand. I liked how Luna took his time establishing the environment and created a sort of slow burn characterization amid a PKD infused world. His art has that fine line wispiness to it that does indeed capture the clean futurism required of such a title. The dialogue was nice. Yet, by the end, the telegraphed denouement does nothing to hook the reader or offer any incentive to return. It seems like a harmless book, so, uhh, yeah, let me know how it goes if you decide to keep reading. Grade B.

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