Sunday, December 1, 2013

Sabertooth Swordsman and Black Science

Man, Sabertooth Swordsman has everything I love! A realized fantastical world, over exaggerated character & personalities, fenzied sword fights, uber-detailed drawings that completely over take you and a heroes journey that isn't your typical heroes journey. God, it's been a while since I've had this much fun reading a comic. If you're a fan of Stokeo's Orc Stain, Rafael Grampá's Mesmo Delivery and Miller/Darrow comics work, then this is a comic for you.

Sabertooth starts story with a horribly drawing of a horribly beaten man. We then find out the beaten man is our protagonist and he's in a journey to get revenge on the people who did this to him and who stole his girlfriend. The way he gets revenge is through a flier for Sasquatch Mountain promising power and strength; a great nod to the Atlas ads in comics. He makes it to Sasquatch Mountain and meets the mischievous Cloud God who transform him to Sabertooth Swordsman. From there starts our journey of revenge and reclamation.

Damon Gentry and Aaron Conley do an amazing job fully realizing the world of Sabertooth Swordsman; they do this within a few pages. Everything they show us makes us believe more in the world and there's this beautiful page where we see Sabertooth going down Sasquatch Moutain. We see that on his way down he has these amazing battles, but we only get a glimpse of them. But Gentry and Conley have done a great job building the world and its characters, that we believe there's history behind those glimpses. That we believe Sabertooth had a hell of a journey going down the mountain and that's only through one page. Also, we don't know all the mechanics but they make us believe there are mechanics that make the world work. So you get a feeling that there's history behind all the places Sabertooth journeys to.

This is all helped by Conley's amazing artwork; it's so beautifully drawn and detailed and he uses black and white to it's fulliest. His art reminds of Stokeo's disgustingly realized and inventive characters with Darrow's eye for heavy detail matched with Grampá's wavy, liney and almost wrinkled look all filtered through Conley unique vision. Conley also an eye for setting up scenes, anatomy, making the characters seem alive and being able to use the characters to convey a multitudes of emotions.

Sabertooth Swordsman is one of those great comics that comes once a decade. Where it restores your love for comics, why you got into comics, and what makes the medium so special. So do yourself a favor and go buy it.

Black Science is the new comic by Rick Remender, Matteo Scalero, Dean White and Rus Wooton. Man, this is a comic that brought all it's promises and more. Remender said he wanted to do a tribute and something new to the EC and Sci-fi comics he read as a child and he brought it. He brought it with Scalera, White  and Wooton.

Black Science tells the story of Grant McKay whose part of an Order of Anarchistic Scientists and by using Black Science, broke through the boundaries of reality, space and time.

This is a first issue so there's a tendency for over expositions and inner-narrative to show the world and situation the characters are in, and to do a broad stroke approach on characterization to show us readers who the characters they are and get acquainted with them. Luckily for us, Remender know how to use these approaches and add another dimension and naunce to his exposition and characterizations. Black Science also seems to be a more mature approach from a veteran comic writer on people who tend to make situations worse through their actions. While they do have good intentions, their choices and background just seems to make the situation worse and further alienate Remender's protagonists from themselves and other people. The type of people who learn the hard way in life and tend to bloom and be at their best when they're older and more experienced.

But, as great as Remender is a writer the big draw is Scalero's art and White's top notch coloring matched with Wooton's lettering. 

Scalero's art is beatuiful to view. As you can see with the image above, the guy knows how to set up a scene and build an atmosphere and world that's choking. He's great at conveying expressions with the characters and show little naunces that add an layer to the characters and the world.

Now, match Scalero's art with White's eye for coloring. Man... You're in for one hell of a treat. I'm glad this is a team that understands how color works in a color and how it can add or detract from a comic. It's great that White understands how a certain colors or palette can drastically the way we view a comic and change the way we view its narrative. So White uses a certain palette to convey an atmosphere of urgency and chaos and it works beautifully, but while maintaining a feeling of wonder.If you're going to do Sci-Fi comic, I think, the feeling of awe and wonder has to be there and color can change the way we see those emotions. But we're in good hands and so is Scalero's amazing artwork.

Overall, this is just a solid first issue from a team that seems to be in-sync. They know what they can bring to the table and they use it to their fullest potential. Black Science seems to be classic Sci-Fi comic in the making, so don't miss out on it.

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