What Did I Learn?
Today’s review is on a comic that goes by the name of Odyssey by Dream Out Loud Comics, namely Eric Guindon and Samantha Gough. It’s a high concept, painterly style science fiction comic – which eventually switches to more linework.
It begins in media res and some details have been hinted at but not explained fully in the story so far. The human race has been seeded by an alien race for unknown purposes. Children are being born that are markedly different than regular humans and the human race is just starting to get used to the idea. The story has depth.
I can’t quite tell how the main character is different, but she was the first baby born differently. Her name is Alexa Gauthier and she’s serving in the United Terran Space Force. She is actually in charge of this mission to explore an alien ship, despite holding a junior rank to another member of the team. She has an old flame in the crew, as well and they all commit the biggest no-no as they explore the craft. That’s right. The crew splits up. We all know that never ends well.
Things start right out with a psychic conversation and memory invasion sequence, so I didn’t even get a strong hint at the connection between the alien mind and Alexa until page 4. Of course, I consciously missed the see-through elevator floor on page 14 too.
It’s an interesting story, though I was a bit lost until I had read the whole archive of 20 pages (so far.) To be fair, these pages are just the introduction and it will probably be easier to understand the introduction as a whole once it’s completed.
The creator comments show that they are also still working out the first kinks comic creators run into. One thing they are working on is the amount of dialog on a page. Being science fiction, the dialog is a bit long for expository purposes and filled with tech talk. For me, page 7 is a really great balance between text and visual.
Overall, they handle it pretty well. They talk about content per page, layout, word balloons, making the dialog work and getting wordpress to do what they want it to do. If you’re thinking of starting your first comic, read the creator comments and you’ll get a taste of the angst you will soon find yourself facing. You can see some progress and adjustments being made. It’s instructive.
Originally, this was going to be a Zuda entry. I’m kind of glad for them. There’s no way to really reduce the 20-odd pages of story information we’ll see in Odyssey’s introduction portion down to eight pages. I think this story is better served in full.
That’s why you can’t let all my talk about getting the comic started distract you. If you like deeper science fiction with a bit of mystery, you’ll enjoy Odyssey.
What Did I Learn?
I happened to read this comic at the point where it is rife with possibility. The overall plot and the characters have been introduced, but what it all means has yet to be shown. Also, there is still plenty more universe to explore as well. In short, this is a great place to jump into Odyssey.