Outpost Zero #1
Writer: Sean Kelley McKeever
Artist: Alexandre Tefenkgi
Colorist: Jean-Francois Beaulieu
Publisher: Image Comics
Review by Cory Webber
Outpost Zero #1 is about possibly one of the smallest towns in the universe and the people who inhabit it, against all odds. It’s your typical small town, except, you know, it’s in the far reaches of outer space. Oh, and the people there live on a frozen planet not meant to sustain human life. Other than that, though, it’s your typical small town where the people work the land, go to the fights on Fridays, and put their kids to bed every night.
Outpost Zero #1 is an over-sized issue that has the hard task of explaining the back story, while telling the current story, and setting up the future story all in one issue. And, you know what? It succeeds with flying colors. McKeever does a wonderful job of weaving these threads together. He doesn’t bog the reader down in exhausting exposition. Rather, he throws you right into the story with the exposition coming out naturally in dialogue. This gave the effect that I was an unknown observer to the story being told.
The world-building is fantastic. This book has an alternate-future/dystopian-type/last-days feel to it, but it comes off as fresh and original. Most noteworthy is McKeever’s character work. He has created a core group of characters that are relatable, funny, witty, and, most of all, vulnerable. They are all fleshed out so well, and distinctive enough, that I felt like I really know them.
Straightaway, Tefenkgi’s art fits the story well. His facial work is so expressive that I could have followed the story just by reading their faces. The panel layouts are run-of-the-mill; however, the story flows well throughout the book. There is some great perspective work, especially in an engaging sequence on a seesaw, albeit with heavy dialogue, that would have otherwise been overbearing to get through.
Now, my favorite part of Outpost Zero #1 just might be Beaulieu’s color work. When you think post-apocalyptic/dystopian alternate future, you think bleak and depressing colors. Or maybe even black and white. Nevertheless, this book is chock full of bright, vibrant colors that belie the bleak, depressing tone that the story provides.
Verdict: Check it out.
Outpost Zero #1 is a solid start to this dystopian/alt-future tale. The world building is immense and well laid out, impressively so, for a first issue.
Outpost Zero #1 is available July 11, 2018.