Thursday, August 2, 2012

Rasl #15

by Jeff Smith

Jeff Smith's second creator-owned series (actually, aside from Bone and that Captain Marvel book he did, has he done anything else?) comes to its end with this issue, which explains almost everything.

Basically, this series fits into the growing comics sub-genre of 'Tesla'.  If you are willing to accept that 'Kirby' is a genre now (and there is plenty of examples of this), I think it's time to give over a corner of the market to books influenced or inspired by the great inventor Nikolas Tesla.  This entire series ended up being about Tesla's ideas and his secret notebooks.

Rasl, our art thief, confronts Sal, the lizard-faced guy who has been chasing him across dimensions since this series started.  After that, we find out who has really been pulling the strings from the beginning, as there is a final showdown over the journals and the use of the St. George's Array, a powerful energy weapon that has unfortunate consequences on other realities.

This was a smart series, with some great art, but I feel like it dragged a little too much in the middle.  Too many issues felt similar to previous ones, and I had a hard time drumming up any great love for the characters.  As well, there were a few too many mysteries, including one that doesn't really get resolved (that of the little girl that looks like she stepped out of a Munch painting).

In the final analysis, this was a decent series, but it is in no way going to eclipse Bone as Smith's greatest work.  I do admire him for trying something so outside of what was expected from him, and will check out his next project, unless it's specifically designed for children.

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