What Did I Learn?
Dax by Aaron Balogh and Jess Boudrie is described like this: “Dax is an intergalactic mercenary and a bit of a rapscallion. On a standard mission he discovers that he is no longer alone. Saddled with a precocious young girl, Dax looks for a way to rid himself of her so he can go back to his normal lifestyle. The girl just wants to get out and see the universe…” from the About page.
It’s cartoony, light hearted but exciting science fiction slice of life. The aliens are alien but still relatable to us hooman types and there are good sci-fi story facets and twists – Dax actually has a couple of different fan clubs; this isn’t as good it sounds. Nothing goes like you first expect and the fringe of civilized space really is a fringe.
The stories are very quickly paced and everything has a double payoff – probably triple in the long run. One comic might have an off event where someone’s arm has been shot off and a later comic references it. I expect to see a third (or more) reference to that. Never the same thing twice but filled with sci-fi tropes.
Something else of note are the good sound effects; some even help tell the story. While this isn’t groundbreaking, the effects stand out just enough to have their say and then they fade out. This changed my mind about their utility, actually. Something I need to study a little more about.
The dialog is very good as well. There is a consistency of tone in all the voices but their vocabulary and personality is always expressed clearly. That tone tinges on sardonic and it actually adds some believability to the comic’s setting while still staying funny.
Note: there is also a successful Kickstarter for the first four volumes collected into book for those of you that might like to order it.
What Did I Learn?
It hadn’t occurred to me to think about balance in what I considered side features of a comic. Special effects and dialog usually exist to support a story but the the case of Dax, they are actually part of the story framework. To be sure, the storylines and art carry the lion’s share of the work but there are other tools that can be more than optional or more than just supporting. Check out Dax Comics and tell me what you think.