Indie Comics Review Roundup #2: Fresh Starts
Welcome to Graphic Policy’s Indie Comics Roundup where we take a look at a handful of indie comics and try to work out just how accessible they are for new readers. Where possible we’ll also be providing recap of sorts for the relevant story beats up until the issue in question in order to help you figure out if the series is something you’re interested in, assuming we’ve read any part of the story thus far.
Each comic will receive a both a rating of Friendly or Unfriendly as well as a score out of ten. The former is based upon how easy it was for new readers to pick the issues up; expect miniseries or first issues to be rated as friendly by default. For second or third issues, more consideration regarding the comic’s accessibility will be given for the specific issue being read rather than the series overall, but if reading a back issue will help, then that will be mentioned. The score out of ten is Graphic Policy’s typical ten point scale, which is there to help you pick between issues if you only want to check out one or two.
We’d rather feature comics from smaller publishers, but from time to time you may notice an Image, Dark Horse or Dynamite book here. Ultimately it depends on what catches our eye, but we’ll always aim to spotlight lesser known comics.
All comics were provided for review purposes unless otherwise noted.
There’s a few first issues this week, so to avoid a repetitive statement at the beginning of each blurb, just assume they’re all Friendly.
A Walk Through Hell #1 (Aftershock) Be prepared for a comic that has heavy societal undertones and an underlying sense of dread that permeates from each and every page. This issue won’t knock your socks off, but it will bring you back for more – this series promises to be a slow burn into a fantastic story. 8/10
Coda #1 (Boom!) In a fantasy world where magic has dwindled, there’s a lot of story here, and the pervading feeling that there is a lot more going on than the surface story alludes to. The immortal, yet decaying dragon, the pentacorn, and an odd sense of order within the chaos are just a handful of the reasons to pick this up. It’s a comic with layers that will reward those who have the patience to spend a half an hour or more within the comic’s pages. 8.3/10
Kino #5 (Catalyst Prime) Don’t be fooled by the fifth issue moniker, here. You can pick this Friendly issue about a man trapped within his own mind and enjoy it more than you’d expect. I sure did. 7.6/10
Survival Fetish #1 (Black Mask) An interesting start to a new story, and one that is nothing like I expected. Going into this comic expecting a horror story, I left after a twenty odd pages of expositionary dialogue and plot but nary a traditional horror trope in mind. That said, this is still an uncomfortable read, and one you should at least thin about picking up. 6.8/10
Wasted Space #1 (Vault Comics) Another first issue, another comic that is as Friendly as you’re going to get to start reading a series, but is this a comic you should be reading? Too bloody right it is. An opening that follows a lot of the typical science fiction and fantasy tropes of a man who ha a past and wants to be left alone… and yet it never once feels like a rehash of other stories. A wasted space this certainly isn’t. 8/10