From the minds of Robert Kirkman and Marc Silvestri comes Stellar, a woman transformed into the weapon that would end an intergalactic war. But this is after that — after the war ended thanks to her help. Now a bounty hunter, Stellar wants to find peace but other living weapons like her are out and they can’t live a life without war. From writer Joseph Keatinge (Glory) and artist Bret Blevins (Sleepwalker) comes a sci-fi story with action, adventure and wonder.
The first thing a reader will notice about this book is how beautiful the landscapes are. From the opening splash page it’s apparent what a treat Blevins’ artwork will be each month. Giant robots stretched across mountains. Crashed spaceships. Giant statues of what look like robots, destroyed, crumbling across the ground. All while little aliens that resemble the British TV show Wombles sit around a campfire, staring at our protagonist intently. This opening page welcomes readers in fantastically. World building is best when it’s up to the reader to figure things out themselves, and splash pages like these with all their little details are great for readers who like to figure the story out for themselves.
The book has some golden age sci-fi vibes and features some of the most interesting alien designs. The bounty that Stellar is transporting for this issue is like a cross between a cockroach and a sloth. He actually brings more of a personality than these sorts of characters usually do, so it’s good to know this will be more than a series of good designs. On their journey they pass many more interesting creatures. There’s a real variety of design here to avoid the sci-fi problem of simply coloring humans vibrantly.
Plot wise, this is a fairly slow issue. The main beats are laid out for the series but structurally not too much happens. There’s enough to hold a comic together but it would have been nice if there was more. With a galaxy as dense as this it makes sense for Keatinge to devote an issue to setting the scene.
With what’s been said about the artwork it has to be noted that the artwork for anything other than landscapes and vistas is a little off. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly what’s ‘wrong’ but things just don’t look right. Small things are more noticeable, like characters talking to one another but their eyes don’t meet properly. The comic has a static feel to it. Even the action sequences look more like snapshots than scenes. It’s a bit like reading a concept art book mixed with a storyboard. But art is subjective so maybe some readers will admire this style more than others.
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