I dedicate this blog to comics in all forms, manga, autobio, superhero, art books, etc. And of course, since I need a challenge, I've decided that I'll read and write (short) reviews for 365 comics during 2015.
The first short in volume 2 of John Pham's Sublife stars two astronauts and Deek, an alien castoff, lost in space. They've managed to scrap together a fix to their ship that should bring them back to Earth, but it's reliant on one man, Captain Ho. However, the strange crystal they're using to power the engine causes unexpected consequences. Captain Ho experiences a fugue state where he can remember everything. Unable to stop himself Ho continues to fire the engine until the crystal is all but depleted. The group is now possibly further from home than ever.
The second story is about another group of three men (and one dog). But, it seems to have no story line at all. That said, I did wish I could read more, so that says something.
The longest story in this collection is an apocalyptic tale with a definite road warrior vibe. After a car crash two survivors try to flag down help, but instead are only able to flag down jerks. The first guy just collects the gas from the vehicles to put into his own, then drives off, leaving the two wounded (and one dead) people to work it out on their own.
The next group of people of course are the typical raider type and terrorize the two survivors. The rest of the story follows the gas thief as he discovers a bunker in the desert.
The art is all in muted colors, kind of subdued and the style changes between some of the stories between ink and pencil, but it's all very nice, the kind of art that I really enjoy. Pham also encourages readers to view the book in different ways, first by the format of the comics orienting them so that readers have to turn the book on it's side to read down the panels, as well as instructing readers to bend the pages to simulate the "space warp" effect. A neat reading experience.
Even though I sympathized more with Deek and Wallach in the first comic, I also couldn't help but understand Captain Ho's need to reminisce about his past and how he got stuck in it, how easy is it to mess up the present while thinking about the past, am I right?
For more short stories (in comic form) try: