Thursday, 20 July 2017

REPLICATOR comic book review

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COMIC REVIEW
Replicator #1 



Self-published via Kickstarter 2016
Writer: Robert Arnold
Artist: Armin Ozdic
Colourist: Ross A Campbell
Letterer: Jaimie Me
Editors: Nick Glenister, Alison Arnold



I’ve always loved me a near future dystopian/plague/climate calamity yarn, so when I read the opening pages of REPLICATOR, I knew I was in for a treat.
The comic tells the story of a deliberately released virus called the Red Death in modern day Britain that forces the country to be isolated generating food shortages and martial law. Eventually forcing the healthy (and rich and useful) to shelter in a walled city called Sanctuary guarded by the latest and the deadliest of men and technology.

Life goes on outside of Sanctuary but the ones left behind are reminded that those inside are far more precious and any indiscretion committed against those from Sanctuary if they leave the city (illegally) are swiftly executed.
This is where we meet our protagonist Ryker. Whose sense of justice seems to fall short of what is required by the security forces. Blank faced, armour wearing humans without much compassion.

Actually, we first meet a totally different and more aggressive Ryker just prior to this. In a two page shoot-em-up involving powerful hand guns, grenades and what looks like a super villain, that happens 18 months in the future. Obviously, Ryker has had some life changing episodes since then that we are going to eventually find out.
There are a few scenes in this first issue that hint at conspiracy and super powers.
Lovely colour work by Ross A Campbell
These are entertaining and well-paced, it all finishes all too quickly on a cliff hanger ending and the reader is left not sure where everything is going.

Thus the problem at hand.

This comic being a successful Kickstarter project only committed to this issue are we going to see what happens next within my lifetime? I hope so because this has the makings of a great series.

Rob Arnold has created a great story and draws the reader in. Artist Armin Ozdic style reminds me of both Javier Berreno and Fernando Melek from Simon Spurrier’s Crossed tale Wish You Were Here. Clean and neat and when asked to draw a splash, really delivers.

I enjoyed REPLICATOR and look forward to more, I just wish it wasn’t something far off on the horizon than something I could pick up next month at the LCS.

A haunting Splash Page by Armin Ozdic

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Thursday, 6 July 2017

FLASH FICTION PART 2

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Flash Fiction has a few disciplines, the three I know of are 100 words - popular with The Spanishish Museum of Words which has a $US 20,000 prize every couple of years. the there is the more traditional 1000 word staple popular in anthologies, but my favourite is 150 words or less that I learned with many other talented folks on the Redbubble art site before it stopped being a community and became a place to buy pirated artwork. It was something I enjoyed and found that these short little stories with a start middle and end were great for transitioning into comic scripts, which is what I tend to do more of these days. These stories below (and in the next couple of posts) are from those redbubble years and can be found in compilations HERE from blurb via Anne van Alkermade's murphywrite imprint. So here we go. Short sharp stories or as Mister Khan called them once: Short stories with a punchline.
PART ONE IS HERE
PART THREE IS HERE

WHEN YOU WISH UPON A STAR

I wished in a dream and dreamed in all hope and I hoped and I prayed that things wouldn’t stay the same and that one day we would meet travellers from other worlds and beyond. Now that is all subject to conjecture as a lie strapped down on an examination table in a very large spaceship somewhere near Jupiter whilst a two and a half metre , four limbed, grey skinned Alien is ready to slam a very large cylindrical probe up my butt.

 FAITH BOUND

It removed all the uneaten meals from the table and scraped the plate’s contents into containers to be used again. The food had long perished; it had been replaced with coloured blocks. The dishes were placed in the Hydro Wash. The robot performed this dutifully three times a day for the mummified crew of the Missionary vessel FAITHBOUND.
It also dressed them every morning and prepared them for the sleeping quarters every night according to the 24-hour shipboard clock. The bodies were well cared for and well preserved, the life support had been shut done eons ago. Forever waiting and serving whilst searching for Heaven amongst the wide reaches of space. Its role in reuniting its crew's bodies with their souls that had left so long ago. Then it could find what the crew used to always talk of but it thought spelt wrong. So it corrected it. Piece of mind.

THE BULLY, THE NERD and THE NERD’S MUM.
The nerdy boy thrust his groin at the bully. “What in hell are you doing nerd? I’m still gonna pound you”, the bully threatened. “My mum wrote me a note telling me how bullies like you can be defeated eventually, by kids smarter than them. Kids just like me ” The nerd replied almost triumphantly. “Show it to me idiot” The bully held out his hand, the nerd continued to thrust rather suggestively at him why rummaging in his pockets. His actions were starting to make the bully feel uneasy. The nerd handed the note to the bully, which he quickly read. The Bully walked up to the nerd and bopped him on the head and walked away laughing. “You idiot it should say, “The pen is mightier than the sword” not “The penis” – Tell your mum to learn how to type”