Friday, April 20, 2012

Prophet #24

Written by Brandon Graham, Farel Dalrymple, and Matt Sheean
Art by Farel Dalrymple and Malachi Ward

How wonderful is this comic?  I feel like, between the last issue and this one, I have a better handle on what Brandon Graham and his collaborators intend to do with this comic.  Last month, John Prophet sent some sort of signal out across the universe to wake up the Earth Empire pod ships, and so when this comic begins, another version of John Prophet (this one has a tail!) comes out of a pod to find that the ship he's been sleeping on for who knows how long has crashed into some other ships.

For some reason, he has to cross the amalgamated vessels to the other side, spurred on by a ghostly young girl.  The rest of this issue is just like the other ones, as John goes about his journey, facing environmental threats, and needing to rely on some odd science fiction stuff, like a 'star skin' that makes him look like the X-Man Armor.  Also, there's a MODOK version of the original Prophet, who is just awesome.

What makes this comic work so well is Graham's ease with such strange situations, as he describes and explains things, but without getting into too much detail.  You know he has an explanation ready for any plot point, but doesn't feel the need to hammer that information into our heads the way many lesser writers would.

The art this month is by Farel Dalrymple, of the brilliant and surrealistic Pop Gun War and the remake of Omega: The Unknown.  Dalrymple is a gifted artist, and he makes his usual style fit more in the aesthetic that regular artist Simon Roy has established for this book.  It's a very beautiful comic.

The back-up this month does not continue the one started previously, but instead is a done-in-one European-style science fiction story by Matt Sheean and Malachi Ward.  I liked it - it would have fit nicely in a Popgun anthology.  In a lot of ways, Graham is using this book to bring back Heavy Metal, which is very cool.  This series continues to be the most exciting thing on the stands each month.

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