(New Worlds Comics, 2015)
Created and Written by Guy Hasson
Art by Aron Elekes (Pages 1 – 15) and Vincent Kings (Pages 16-23)
Science Fiction comics usually thread the line between horror and fantasy. Guy Hasson has written a book that is cleverly horrifying and fantastically smart at the same time. Feast your eyes and brains on this goodie from New Worlds Comics, Wynter #4.
If you are unfamiliar with Wynter, I’ll take a moment to recap. This is a future where an app can be downloaded directly into the brain, where humanity has survived so long that every possible combination of DNA has been exhausted. Centuries after that the Galactic Government has a file like the DMV. Each and every model is characterized and coded, and each and every reaction to every possible situation is figured into a giant matrix that has virtually assassinated the idea of “free will”.
Liz Wynter is among a million of herself, just another Liz, when she downloads an app that allows her to see into “subversive” the network that connects everyone. For this the Galactic Government would have her killed lest she become one more terrorist at the hands of Zero-Content, a super villain hiding in plain sight.
Alex Grace is the Supreme Agent, the smashing fist of the GG, tasked with the quiet and brutal enforcement of his government’s will. He is trying to find Liz, as well as Zero-Content. (Thus named because all information related to him has been wiped from the system.)
Got all that? If not buy the previous issues; they’re totally worth it.
Liz is on the run in this, the fourth installment, and finds brief respite with another version of Alex Grace, named Josh, who gives her sanctuary. It allows her to catch her breath while giving Mr. Hasson the chance to dive a little more into her character without having to broadcast it to the fictional world. Although the majority of what happens in this issue isn’t as theatrically exciting as the book before, I found that the pages quickly slipped by, as they are wont to do in this book.
This look at Liz, with someone for the first time since the first issue, reveals how scared she really is. The truth of it is that she’s a seventeen year old who saw the wrong thing and has been turned into the second most wanted person on the planet. She has no one to turn to and can’t go out for fear that the cameras mounted everywhere will pick up her image and she’ll be found. Hasson makes us feel quite sympathetically for Liz, and because of that feeling makes her that much stronger a main character.
The art in this book is impeccable. Aron Elekes has up to this point only done comic work in Wynter (as far as I know) but his talent is clear. He paints the panels, drastically shadowing his characters, giving the book the same dark feel that Blade Runner had. Elekes makes this distopian world beautiful to a point where even a picture of a guy brushing his teeth is fascinating, and I find myself staring intently at the pages even now as I try to focus on writing. He’s a master of form.
For the first time, this issue also has art by Vincent Kings, who worked as an editorial assistant on IDW’s Black Dynamite miniseries. His work, though different from Elekes’, is also quite beautiful, and his use of expressive features in the faces of the characters is fantastic.
Wynter #4 conjures up the memory of Orwell’s 1984 and jump-starts it ten thousand years into the future. It’s a story of the puppeteers and their marionettes, though it is not evident who takes on which role. Aron Elekes and Vincent Kings have drawn a book that would make any company proud to publish. Guy Hasson writes an intriguing tale, and produces a beautiful comic to boot.
Twitter – brad@comicwasteland