Skip to the End #3
Publisher: Heavy Metal
Writer: Jeremy Holt
Artist & Cover Artist: Alex Diotto
Colorist: Renzo Podesta
Letterer: Adam Wollet
Review by Anelise Farris
Skip to the End #3 continues the story of Johnny: former bassist of the band Samsara (a fictionalized Nirvana). Johnny is an addict, struggling to leave the past behind and move forward with his life. This is a recovery narrative—not only in terms of his drug use, but also in the sense that Johnny is wrestling to recover his own identity apart from his long-ago role in Samsara. Gifted with a Dolorean-esque guitar it seems that Johnny has been given a chance to relive the past, yet, as any student of sci-fi knows, you can’t alter the past (even in an apparently insignificant way) without affecting the future.
Skip to the End #3 raises more questions about what this time-travelling device can do and whether or not Johnny can trust those who have rallied around him during his recovery. Issue #3 is heavy (in the best way possible) as it raises all sorts of questions: Are some events in our lives simply inevitable? How do we heal from addiction? What are ways in which we can honor the past without letting it rule our future? This issue also carefully presented readers with more Nirvana history: adding facts, quotes, and events here and there without feeling dense or distracting.
Although I thoroughly enjoyed issues #1 and #2 of Skip to the End, issue #3 took the series to a new level. The art continues to mesmerize with the sponge-paint style panel backgrounds and use of pastels. While seemingly simple, the art manages to be emotive and affecting long after you turn the page.
Buy it! Skip to the End #3 is an impressive continuation of the sci-fi Nirvana comic that is making all the right moves. It is clear that Jeremy Holt and his team know Nirvana, but what is even more impressive is that they are delivering a sci-fi music comic (which on the surface might seem lighthearted) with a poignant recovery narrative at its core. Even if you aren’t a Nirvana fan, this comic manages to deliver an important story about mental health and moving forward.