What Did I Learn?
In Alien Echo by Stephen Buell, the main character Solomon Banes has undertaken a more or less heroically suicidal mission to save mankind. It stands to cost him everything except his life. It certainly costs him everyone and everything he has known.
And every chapter ends with a well done cliffhanger. No, I’m not going to spoil anything for you but the story is pretty deep. Not knowing how it’s going to end, I can’t really sum up the storyline for you but Alien Echo, up to this point, reminds me of a tragic story like the Titanic as told by both the first mate and the iceberg. There are personal, emotional, and physical crises to be faced by more than just our hero.
You’ll notice how, despite this complexity of situation, the focus of the tale is never unclear. You also get the sci-fi setting experience, some tech talk and a little star travel but you can never avoid the main story going on. Probably the best part is that you get some understanding about what is going on without it spilling all the story at once.
The art has straightforward linework and as you can see from the sample image, the color sells the comic. It creates an impact on the reader and expresses a great deal of the comic’s mood. There’s a good balancing act going on there; too little color work and the comic loses some drama while too much would make it overblown drama.
Alien Echo is on the tail end of a hiatus, so it’s a good time to jump on and check it out. It is also available on the iPhone for those who like to read comics that way.
What Did I Learn?
It is amazing how many different variables there are to making comics and how easy it is to go overboard or not do enough on any one thing. The effect that each element has needs to be carefully set and maintained so that it has the desired affect on the reader. In this case, Alien Echo is aiming to provide you some good “man in space” sci fi and it delivers.