Review: Elsewhere #1
Writer: Jay Faerber
Art: Sumeyye Kesgin
Colours: Ron Riley
Letters: Thomas Mauer
Publisher: Image Comics
Many, many people have an opinion about what happened to Amelia Earhart. Recent pictures that have emerged suggest she may have been captured by the Japanese army during the war. Other theorists have mooted the distinct possibility that she simply crashed into the sea, miles and miles from inhabited land, and thus far from rescue. in Elsewhere, Faerber (Copperhead, Noble Causes) has taken a somewhat more fantastical route and with it has penned an intriguing new series which, in my opinion, has one of the best premises for a comic that I’ve seen in a long while. We are offered a protagonist who we already know and have at least the minimal cultural references of; this prior knowledge is then married with an out and out fantasy setting for an action adventure romp. But is our evanescent Earhart elsewhere, or is this comic going nowhere?
The tale opens with the escape of a pair of otherworldly ne’er-do-wells, Cort and Tavel, from the castle fortress of Lord Kragen, who clearly is set up to be a thorn in the side of our intrepid Amelia from the outset. The place is Korvath and by sheer luck, spoken Korvathian and spoken English are utterly compatible meaning that when she is discovered, disorientated and on the defensive, she is able to gain her bearings and thus begin a new adventure – one that will hopefully lead to her finding her way home. In order to facilitate her return, she needs her trusty navigator Fred, and, of course, her plane back and in one piece. We discover that the former, rather unhelpfully, has been seized by our prickly overlord, Kragen, leading to Amelia, with her new comrades in tow, formulating a plan. The action is pacy and the book has an action adventure feel to it but having a fantasy setting, the door is open for mindblowing, out-of-this-world vistas, and nightmarish, alien supporting characters. But, of course, the whole concept has a unique twist that plays beautifully into the other genres.
Colour wise, I really liked the toned down palate. This makes the book stand out from other books within the genre which often splash out on garish alien landscapes and freaky deaky alien characters and creatures. The bluish hues and shadowed features at night create a sense of mystery and up the ante when it comes to Kragen’s roving sentries. The dulled palate also, surprisingly, works really well when we are privy to the wide frame spreads depicting the exotic landscapes of the planet.
Moving along quite quickly, the plot doesn’t fully allow for too much character development. Status and situation confirm what we need to know about each introduced individual and there aren’t any surprises in this respect. The ending, however, does hold something of an unexpected climax and leaves us open to surmise on the implications in advance of issue #2. The cartoonish artwork does tend to lead us in a cartoon-like direction, in terms of outcome, and it’s hard not to think of some of our favourite small screen serials, maybe in the Cities of Gold vein. The short, snappy episodes of dialogue also give this a light feel. As well as giving the lettering a tucked away feel it also felt like we’re not being fed dogma here, but most definitely just a slice of fun pie.
Overall, a reasonably new angle on an already overloaded genre. This is great to see. A little too simplistic and light maybe, but pacy, good fun at the same time.
Thank you for reading our review of Elsewhere #1. We here at the Chico Comics Page appreciate your viewership. We invite you to check back with us soon as we post often. Or, you can follow us on Facebook (The Chico Comics Page) and Twitter (@ChicoComicsPage) for regular updates on all of our posts.
Review written by Arun S.
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