Friday, April 25, 2008

Beyond #1

Created by Deepak Chopra
Scripted by Ron Marz
Art by Edison George
Colors by Parasuraman A.
Lettered by Sudhir R. Pisal
Virgin Comics, Due in stores May 28, 2008
(a PDF preview copy was provided for purpose of review)

Everyone has heard of a story of some family going to a foreign country and all, or parts, of the family just disappearing. Its an urban legend, and like all such stories get passed around, but no one really knows WHO the particular family is. This comic walks that familiar ground and takes it off into a suspenseful, supernatural path full of possibilities.

We follow an American named Michael, who has brought his family to India on a business trip. Michael is the typical "ugly American" visitor who not only can't see the wonders of the world around him, but gets annoyed when his wife and son do.

It was interesting to see how the art showed this closed mindedness by having Michael's scenes take place in small, closed panels . I took it at first to be an artist that didn't know when to pull back to let the scope of a scene show. Yet the more I read and thought on it, the more it actually worked to display that closed mindedness the character had.

Whether it was an elephant crossing in the middle of a street, or the beauty of the lighting of candles ceremony on the water. We never peel back to take in the beauty of it, just as Michael doesn't take in the beauty and wonder around him as well.

When Michael's wife goes missing he must open himself, and this is shown by the panel structure getting slightly more open, to find her. Not only taking in the beauty of the world around him but seeing the dangers as well. At least one danger that is scarily supernatural in origin.

This was a great start to the series, as while I start off disliking Michael a great deal. Seeing him start to change and realize what he faces to lose was engaging. I'm wondering right along with him and his son what exactly is going on, and whether or not he'll ever get his wife back or faces losing even more.

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