Dear Ghost Factory. What Should I Read?
By: Rob Neil Gruszecki
The sizzling barrel of a ray gun held waist height blasts off a powerful round splattering the brains of the intended target all over the walls behind him. The walls, in retaliation, come to life and pursue the murderous, slickly dressed man down a hallway and eventually into his memories as they cascade downwards into subspace. An endless ether houses snapshots of existence like comic panels as the owner fights off monsters rapidly falling into abyss past moments in time, previously experienced and catalogued in the subconscious. The eternity bleeds on into red until a portal opens at its base, a way out, a salvation, another opportunity to kill a Bolshevik and paint the room with his entrails. All has become routine in the life of Leon Theremin.
Theremin is the new series by Curt Pires (LP) and Dalton Rose (Sacrifice, Phabula) that chronicles a meta journey through the life of a scientific mind, struggling with its creations and identity. Being released digitally through Monkeybraincomics.com the new series is both a cosmic triumph and a cerebral dropkick to the head. Watching the face of a historical legend as it explodes multiple times in only a few pages is complimented by the madcap, time-hopping, dimension-spanning, reality-warping, oblivion-exploring wormhole that sucks you in from page one of Theremin. The brand new edition to Chris Roberson’s (IZombie, Cinderella: From Fabletown With Love) online imprint will surely be of interest to the likes of Casanova, The Invisibles or Shade the Changing Man fans.
The local Calgarian Curt Pires showed up on my radar with the release of his self published LP (which I have reviewed previously here) and has become a talent to watch since. Encapsulating the elements of chaotic science fiction bursting with ingenuity, research, experimentation, cognisant expansion and reinvention of stale tropes and combining them with the concise and measured prose of a memorable character drama is the recipe for an exciting and explosive first issue. Pires’ ability to utilize complex theories and ideas and use them for cartoon mayhem is littered throughout the book as the espionage artist Leon Theremin goes about designing the eerie musical instrument of his namesake and then onto time manipulation before the eyes of a reluctant icon. The style of writing at play is both multilayered and enjoyable so each subsequent read through has something new to deliver.
Working on interiors and colours is Dalton Rose who contributes a manic and mesmerizing aesthetic to the time travelling scientist as he tumbles down through an inner cosmos, clouded by a red and pink hue. His pencils have an innocence to them that make the casual and horrific disposal of people’s faces a twisted joy to watch. His colours speak volumes throughout the issue from the trans-dimensional ether that swallows our hero and his pursuers or the drab interiors of a laboratory, both brought to life through a relatively simple pallet. Rose’s designs have a unique quiver to them that seems as though everything is always in motion which I think adds tremendously to the world where reality itself is vibrating beyond comprehension.
Theremin marks the first published work for the team of Curt Pires, Dalton Rose and letterer Ryan Ferrier (Tiger Lawyer, Brothers James) who produce a great spectacle for the medium and one worth following in the months to come.
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