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Alienated (BOOM! Studios)

ALIENATED #4 review

Synopsis

Afraid of what she could have done with Chip’s powers, Samantha passes the dangerous alien along to Samir — but Samir has his own plans, and he doesn’t share Samantha’s reservations.

Review

I have been loving this series so far, each issue has been better than the last as we find out more about each character, their motivations and their history. This issue focusses on Samir as he deals with the pain and shame he feels for his father leaving his family, as well as moving the b plot on as Samuel’s mother gets closer in her investigation into the disappearance of school kid Leon. Light spoilers below.

This issue fleshes out the main cast, fully establishing what makes them ‘alienated’, while also sharing the motive’s they have for their alien ‘pet’, Chip. I have always touted that his book is one that utilises every feature of the comics medium at its disposal to tell its story and this issue is the best example of this. The lettering, colour tones, panel layouts and even the guttering work together with the art and writing to tell an emotional and tense story. The panels are symmetrical, making the sudden jump into Samir’s mind even more impactful where the art is convoluted and collaged. In Samir’s mind the memories are coloured in his distinctive ochre, and the colouring of the lettering tells the story in thought bubbles with ease. The guttering is used to transition the scenes and panels from mind to reality, and the variation to the lettering bring a nuance to the voices of the characters. It is a truly masterful piece of craftmanship, with a great story to boot.

Si Spurrier’s grasp on his characters make for an excellent and emotional read. The reveals in this issue packs a highly emotional punch as we discover Samir’s identity crisis and the lengths, he is willing to go to show his father how much it has affected him. Spurrier is dealing with very difficult issues which I have never tackled in a comic book before and is succeeding in getting his point across. Chris Wildgoose’s art wonderfully compliments the story, and together they managed to make this reviewer stop taking notes and just immerse myself in the book I was reading. It is heavy, it is tense, and it is light and funny all the same. The character acting again is top notch as each character has their own distinct look and characteristics, and there is one-page turn which is truly shocking – Wildgoose has a wild imagination!

This book goes from strength to strength, getting deeper and deeper with each issue. It evokes genuine emotion and is invigorating from start to finish. It is always first on my read list when it comes out and it should be yours too!

Verdict

9/10 – This is probably the most important teen comic book being released right now, and it should be read by EVERYONE! It is a testament to the art form, and I can’t wait for the next issue.


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