Infinite Dark #1
Writer: Ryan Cady
Artist: Andrea Mutti
Colorist: K. Michael Russell
Publisher: Image Comics (Top Cow)
Review by Jim Allegro
What is it like to live at the end of the universe? Infinite Dark #1 blends genres of science fiction and horror to answer that question. Ryan Cady and Andrea Mutti cast this brooding space thriller in the tradition of sci-fi suspense films such as Life and Alien. These stories are frightening because they use the monsters and other mysteries that haunt the far-flung corners of outer space to remind us of the fragility of our existence as human beings.
Cady’s freshman effort at independent comicbook writing succeeds in this endeavor. Dread and guilt are the primary emotions expressed by the few thousand people to survive the collapse of the universe. These remaining humans live together on the void station Orpheus. There, they co-exist in the uneasy peace of infinite nothingness. Until, that is, a brutal murder leaders Security Director Deva Karrell to investigate an otherworldly terror. What she discovers will challenge the nature of reality itself.
The artwork contributes a gloomy quality to her investigation. Mutti’s talent for unfinished lines and murky figures evokes the ambivalence that Karrell and other crew members feel at being stuck between realities. Splash pages bathed in black isolate the crew, alone in the darkness waiting for a second big bang to bring life back to the cosmos. K. Michael Russell uses cold blue hues to hint that that moment may never come. And, the fear and anxiety provoked by his warmer reds remind us that Cady’s provocative search for the meaning of existence is also an entertaining murder mystery.
Verdict: Buy it.
Part existential thriller and part space mystery, Infinite Dark #1 is Event Horizon meets Asimov or Clarke. It is a suspenseful murder plot that raises larger questions about what it means to human.