Comic Picks By The Glick

Deep Beyond vol. 1

October 22, 2021

In the world of “Deep Beyond,” the Y2K bug took no prisoners when it hit.  Every computer on Earth shut down and the planet descended into barbarism as a result.  Then it got worse as an infection of strange plant life started creeping in from the seas.  In the face of all this, humanity persevered and rebuilt itself by living in self-sufficient colonies, which is where we find scientist Paul Bailey at the start of the story.  He’s just learned that Pam, an old friend who he had feelings for, is presumed dead after a mission she was on to investigate an anomaly off the coast.  Before he can fully process this, he’s kidnapped by her twin sister Jolene into helping her crew steal a submarine to go after Pam.  That’s because the last message she sent indicated that she had found something big.  Something that could either save the world or destroy it all over again.

 

If nothing else, I have to admire all the genres that this series manages to smash together underneath its big sci-fi umbrella.  There’s post-apocalyptic restructuring, undersea exploration, and at least two more that I won’t mention for fear of spoilers.  The underwater stuff did give off some very “Sphere”-ish vibes, but even if the story’s setup does recall the high-concept sci-fi of Michael Crichton it’s not quite as engaging as the stories he spun out of it.  There’s also the issue that co-writers Mirka Andolfo and David Goy don’t really do anything new within all of the genres they’ve featured here.  They do, however, embrace one thing that critics loved to pile on Crichton for  with their cast of one-dimensional characters who feel like they’re only there to help advance the plot.

 

Holding this all together is the art of Andrea Broccardo.  While I remember him from his fill-in work on “Doctor Aphra,” he delivers some next-level stuff here.  That’s because he thrives on all the genres he’s being asked to tackle as he gives us a convincingly rebuilt society, some impressive underwater sights, and visions of a new world beyond all of this.  Oh, and lots of monsters as well.  It’s ultimately enough to make me want to see where this is going to go in the title’s second, and concluding volume.  It may not go anywhere I’m not expecting, but I imagine it’ll at least look good while getting there.

 

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