We don’t know much yet, except that four highly trained military personnel are being flown to a dangerous drop-off point. Dr. Lin might be behind the military expedition, and that it’s all because some scientists discovered a strange phenomenon - a rather intriguing phenomenon which I won’t spoil. I will say that The Warning is science fiction in the best of ways. If you saw Annihilation, you’ll understand.
Let’s talk about the tone and the mood of this first issue. It reminded me of the first act of Aliens, before the Colonial Marines end up on LV-426, when Ripley is waking up on the space station. There’s a vibrancy to it; you can hear the drone in the background, and everything feels a little surreal, like waking up from a long nap. It’s thoughtful, almost transcendental.
This sort of tone and pacing wouldn’t work in comic book form, if it wasn’t for two main reasons: the visuals and the structure. As far as the visuals, Laroche uses depth of field in a beautiful way, drawing our attention to things in frame that really make this feel dynamic, like a film. It gives the panels space and room to breathe. He creates some beautiful effects without feeling overindulgent. Along with that, Brad Simpson’s colors are luminous. Each environment that’s being used, whether it’s a military base with the glow of computers throwing their harsh lights across people’s faces or in a beautiful beach front property where the sun is radiant and relaxing, he draws you into each environment creating the feeling of space in some panels or the feeling of claustrophobia in others.
The second reason why this book does such an effective job of pulling you in is because of the structure; the story doesn’t unfold by moving forward . . . but that’s all I’ll say. This is something I hope he doesn’t let go of in the upcoming issues.
The great thing is that you can feel Laroche’s confidence as a storyteller in every frame. He’s taking his time. Laroche isn’t just telling a story or drawing you in with action or drama. He wants you to be curious. He wants this to be earned.
Creative Team: Edward Laroche (creator, writer, artist), Brad Simpson (colors), Jaymes Reed (letters), Donald Hodges (editor)
Publisher: Image Comics
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