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Do you see the X? DO YOU!?

Do you see the X? DO YOU!?

Mister X: Eviction #1 (of 3)

Dean Motter – Creator & Writer

Dean Motter – Illustrator on “Eviction: Part One”

Dean Motter – Penciler & Colorist on “In Control”

Hamid Bahrami – Inker & Colorist on “In Control”

Joey Braccino – Reviewer for Talking Comics

Sci-fi post-modernism meets Hard-boiled noir in Dean Motter’s decopunk world of Mister X. Pyschetecture, somnaphobias, mechanical men, mummified lounge lizards abound in the latest Mister X mini-series from Dark Horse.

To be completely honest, I don’t really know what the conflict is just yet. There are the inklings of some sort of corruption scheme plaguing Radiant City—something regarding the Central governments plans to use a new brand of psychetecture (pyshic architecture) to control the minds of the citizens, but the 12-page Eviction: Part One focuses more on establishing Mister X’s unique world of monsters, miscreants, and malfeasance. A large portion of the main story is also dedicated to exploring once-intrepid journalista Rosey’s descent into booze and blaming herself. If anything, Dean Motter seems to be promising a deeper, character-driven story with this mini-series, focusing on the flaws of our main character (X) and narrator (Rosey).

The second half of the book features a one-and-done tale that helps to characterize our eponymous hero as… well, the hero of Radiant City. The story of an out-of-work traffic controller who falls under the control of a malicious building superintendent allows Motter to explore the dualities of Radiant City: on the one hand, we have flying cars and skyrails; on the other hand, we have mid-20th Century American automobiles guzzling gas on the groundfloor. Think Blade Runner, except replace the abundant grit with a passion for pulp.

Sure, the plot may require an intensive reading, but Motter’s designs and illustrations are the true storytellers here. His Radiant City exudes that classic modernism that informs all those –punk aesthetics. The panels are rich with pulpy figures and tight close-ups reminiscent of ‘50s crime-serials, ‘80s neo-noir, and contemporary color palettes. Mister X: Eviction is absolutely gorgeous, and the multiple readings needed to parse out the characterization and the story are worthwhile just to look at the art one more time!

Just a sampling of Dean Motter's amazingness.

Just a sampling of Dean Motter’s amazingness.

Verdict

Definitely worth a look, particularly for fans of genre-bending comics. Mister X: Eviction promises a blend sci-fi and pulp-detective drama that might appeal to a lot of sick-of-superheroics readers out there! I can’t think of any other books as unique on the stands today from both a visual and storytelling stand-point. Check it!

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