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Ei8ht vol 1: Outcast s/c

Ei8ht vol 1: Outcast s/c Ei8ht vol 1: Outcast s/c Ei8ht vol 1: Outcast s/c

Ei8ht vol 1: Outcast s/c back

Mike Johnson & Rafael Albuquerque


Page 45 Review by Stephen

If your first impression upon opening a graphic novel is, “Ooooh, look at those colours!” then you’re off to a good start.

Unless it’s in black and white, in which case it’s high time you rethought your LSD intake.

Tones of turquoise form the consistent base on black and white. Throw in butterscotch, bloody red splatters, then lime-green or purple or blue and I was primarily more than impressed, until I realised it wasn’t just a pretty face I was looking at. They’re actually chronological colour codes: the past is in green, the present is purple, the future is blue, whereas the butterscotch Meld “is something else entirely”.

And it is.

It’s a pocket dimension in time into which things fall from the past, the present or the future, often by accident as if caught in some sort of Bermuda Triangle but occasionally by design. Joshua’s been sent quite deliberately from the future into the Meld in order to assassinate The Spear. He’s volunteered in exchange for the scientist’s help curing his comatose wife. Unfortunately he’s lost the majority of his memory and when he tries to communicate with the future using the frequency of 8 he’d drawn on his wrist, he hears instead a woman’s voice urging him to follow the dinosaur: that little critter which has just appeared to his right.

He follows the lizard only to encounter a woman called Nila whose voice is identical to the one he’d just heard, but she’s never seen him before in her life. She’s certainly never spoken to him.

Meanwhile, Doctor Hamm in the present has chartered a plane to fly into a storm he believes will take his team to the Meld. It doesn’t. It takes him waaaaaay back in time and into a period of the past populated by sabretooth lions.

How much more should I tell you? The Spear too has a time capsule which he doesn’t know how to operate and now leads The Tyrant’s soldiers in search of the rebels amongst whom is Nila. Nila’s younger brother has a monkey dressed in a NASA spacesuit, while Nila herself bears an uncanny resemblance to Joshua’s wife from the future.

Will everything connect? Oh yes, with much more to come, including that marking of ‘8’ Or infinity.

It’s not quite as breath-taking as the ridiculous clever and compact time-travel chapter in Warren Ellis’ SECRET AVENGERS VOL 3 or the first season finale of Matt Smith’s Doctor Who, but it’s plenty satisfying, I promise you.

The figure work throughout is rough-hewn but gorgeous, Albuquerque’s animals are thoroughly thrilling, while the elaborately helmed Tyrant looks like he’s drawn by Sir Barry Windsor-Smith – especially his nose, jaw and mouth. Which was unexpected.