Outer Darkness #5
Writer: John Layman
Artist: Afu Chan
Outer Darkness is a space exploration comic book that narrates the life of reckless captain Joshua Rigg and his crew on board the starship Charon powered with a God-engine. The series takes place in a distant alternate future where magic and technology mix in harmony making it an intriguing new kind of space exploration plot.
This chapter first shows us a distant future with a horrible monster terrorizing a colony and then cuts back to where issue #4 left off, with an explosion aboard the ship. The Charon makes an emergency landing on an ice planet to attend to damages and injuries and that’s when things begin to get really messy with stress amidst the crew commanding officers and demonic possessions.
Despite me enjoying this series so far this chapter didn’t please that much. On previous issues, we got clever introductions to characters and especially to this universe’s set of rules which were skillfully built into the script. We continue to get more of the amazing characters and weird science/magic, however, considering this issue was the first part to the first arc’s conclusion, I think a lot more could have happened, seeing we’re only presented with a crude set up. Sure the previous chapters presented us to the tiny pieces in the puzzle coming together, but this one doesn’t even give us a glimpse on that puzzle yet.
Afu Chan’s artwork is one the best on comics these days easily. Extremely stylized without being fuzzy and confusing. Using hard sharp lines, he delivers beautiful compositions for every one of the panels. Chan’s character designs are unique, making use of different ethnicities, shapes, hairstyles and alien species (ranging from a simple cat-lady to draconian officer with a goatee) showing just how varied a set of characters in a sci-fi themed series can be. The monsters and horror scenes for the book don’t fall behind. Chan’s style seems to be quite friendly at first but delivers one of the best gore artwork I’ve ever seen along with scary and imaginative monster designs which instantly change the comic book’s tone whenever they’re shown.
Outer Darkness is a fantastic series which has just released what could be its first dud. Maybe this month’s dull read is compensated by the next issue which concludes the comics’ first story arc and, who knows, shows that this issue’s lack of action was the best option to go for. Despite not enjoying this issue, I recommend picking this series as it is one of the most innovative comics being published at the moment.
Outer Darkness is an amazing series which just released what could be its first dud. Maybe this month's dull read is compensated by the next issue which concludes the comics' first story arc and, who knows, shows that this issue's lack of action was the best option to go for. Despite not enjoying this issue, I recommend picking this series as it is one of the most innovative comics being published at the moment.