Clay McLeod-Chapman, writer
Jakub Rebelka, art
Patricio Delpeche, colors
This story is about the rebirth of humanity seen through the eyes of a man, David, whose decisions led to humanity’s demise one thousand years ago. In his first life, David created a cyber network he thought would protect human beings, which was manipulated by invaders and used to destroy humanity. This issue begins, David prepares to be uploaded with the knowledge of his previous life. The one he lived prior to dying. The upload is performed by Chloe, his acting mother, whom he created in his first life. This complex relationship, dyad if you will, provides the receptacle for an amazing story.
Most will know the writer, Clay McLeod-Chapman, from his work on the Absolute Carnage story arc in Marvel recently. Jakub Rebelka is a famed artist from Poland who has worked on properties such as Dr. Strange and Oskar – King of Shadows. The two are accomplished and respected for their previous works; they definitely bring their A-game to this project. The story includes complex themes like resurrection, mortality, original sin, and identity. The art is mystical, cryptic, confusing, making it perfect for a dystopian story with such grand aspirations.
Not only does the story explore macro-level themes questioning the value of systems, societal knowledge, and group awakening. It also tackles micro-level, intimate themes, about the importance of nurturing, having a narrator and witness to our lives. These intimate moments occur through the relationship between Chloe and David and also provide the emotional base for the story.
The art depicts these grand events with a surprising but effective lack of details. Evil computers, called drones, are geometrical and generic. The faces and bodies of the robots, cyborg, and human are also generic, revealing very little emotion or true humanity only in spurts. However, it’s when David bleeds that we learn his regenerated identity as human and his identity, at least in part, as mortal.
I am so interested in this story. It has been a long time since I’ve read a book that is tackling so much, yet in a simple way but with so much depth. I want to see how David handles the knowledge he’s been given and how Chloe adjusts to the knowledge David gained, and the changes it has brought to his very existence. I highly recommend this book Overall 10 = 10