Writer Grant DeArmitt and artist/colorist/letterer Lane Lloyd’s story of cosmic horror, Hunt for the Solavore, is a brilliant mix of the subtle and the bombastic. With a script that keeps cards close to the vest, and a crazy no-holds-barred art style, this is a comic you won’t soon forget.
About Hunt for the Solavore:
A 42-page sci-fi saga about a beast that devours suns… and the king who dares to defy it.
DeArmitt wastes no time throwing us into the action. From page one, we are immediately following a family, running from something that is destroying their planet. Danger is everywhere and the stakes are high. But then, DeArmitt brings the pace to a sudden stop. We go from planets ending to a tired, old king. It’s a jarring transition, and deliberately so. DeArmitt keeps the reader’s attention, by shifting gears so suddenly, yet so seamlessly. And the script remains just as entrancing. DeArmitt speaks through the silences almost more than he speaks through the dialogue. It’s what is left unsaid that tells us everything we need to know about the characters and what they fear.
Really, this script has everything you could want. We get large, sci-fi level stakes, subtle human moments, and scenes of terrifying horror. DeArmitt manages to take all of these ingredients, and a truckload of some of the best world-building you’ll see, and squeezes them into a sleek 42 pages. Yet none of it feels rushed or busy. That’s because DeArmitt trusts his audience with a minimalistic script, with rarely more than a single word balloon per panel. DeArmitt is a writer who tells his stories in the margins and pauses of a comic.
Art & Coloring
Where DeArmitt’s approach to this story is subtle and simplified, Lloyd’s is vibrant and full of cartoony flare. At first glance, it seems like it’s the big action sequences in which Lloyd is in their element. They brilliantly show planets exploding and soldiers gearing up for war. But it’s in the smaller moments where Lloyd’s work really shines. These moments stand in such contrast to Lloyd’s wild art style, that they stand out as the quiet, beautiful moments that they are. When King Theosis, our protagonist, is closing his eyes at the sound of bad news, or when he stares back at his home planet and we can see his worried look in the reflection on the window, these are the moments that stick with you. But so does the horror of the Solavore. Its twisted body and its playful attitude when it comes to carnage, shown in how it looks almost as though it is celebrating through the battle, will keep you up at night.
Lloyd’s color palette is quite simple. They stick to reds, blues, purples and browns, giving the whole comic a uniform feel. But it’s in the woods, with a darker shade to the color palette, that the Solavore’s brilliant red eyes pierce through the night. Lloyd uses simple choices and a minimalist color scheme to devastating effect.
Hunt for the Solavore is a dance of subtle writing and crazy visuals. Hopefully, we’ll see lots more of Grant DeArmitt and Lane Lloyd’s work. For now, Hunt for the Solavore has gone out in digital format to backers of their Kickstarter and will be sent out in print in the following months. You can still get your copies at Lane Lloyd’s Gumroad. Follow Grant and Lane’s work on Twitter to support them, and check out MFR’s interview with them, back when they were just starting work on Hunt for the Solavore.