Dark fron­tiers

SFX - - Comics -

Re­lease Date: OUT NOW! Pub­lisher: Im­age Writer: Ivan Bran­don Artist: Nic Klein

The on­slaught of cre­ator- owned science fic­tion comics pub­lished by Im­age is show­ing no signs of slow­ing down, and the lat­est to hit of­fers a new spin on the sci- fi/ West­ern sub­genre. Re­cent se­ries like Cop­per­head have shown how heav­ily ex­plored this ter­ri­tory is, but Drifter still man­ages to feel fresh thanks to an enig­matic cen­tral mys­tery and lurid vi­su­als.

The se­ries opens with an es­cape pod crash- land­ing on a dis­tant alien world. The pod’s oc­cu­pant is Abram Pol­lux, a man on the run from a shad­owy past, and while the planet’s land­scape holds mon­strous dan­gers, he finds shel­ter at the nearby hu­man out­post Ghost Town. How­ever, it soon turns out that Pol­lux’s mem­o­ries may be play­ing tricks on him…

Writer Ivan Bran­don and artist Nic Klein pre­vi­ously teamed on Vik­ing, and here their ap­proach is even more nu­anced and cre­ative, giv­ing us an im­pres­sively bleak and be­liev­able drama while also show­cas­ing hard- edged SF world- build­ing. Klein’s gor­geous fully painted art adds a lush, evoca­tive at­mos­phere to the se­ries, and th­ese first three is­sues fea­ture a num­ber of vivid set­pieces, as well as some bru­tal vi­o­lence. Dark, brood­ing and slow- burning, Drifter is tak­ing its time to re­veal its mys­ter­ies, but so far it’s a well- crafted pulp thriller that’s a strong ad­di­tion to Im­age’s cur­rent line- up. Saxon Bul­lock Bran­don was taught comic art by Bat­man: Year One’s David Maz­zuc­chelli; he drew his first comic with Maz­zuc­chelli’s help aged 10.

Barry had that dream about den­tists again.

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