Port Of Earth is Image/Top Cow’s new sci-fi comic book series. Writer Zack Kaplan, artist Andrea Mutti, and colorist Vladimir Popov waste no time in immersing readers in a unique concept.
***SPOILERS LIE AHEAD***
Sometimes it can be a drag when a comic is largely made up of news reports. That’s not the case here, these segments are how we learn about the world we are immersing ourselves in. These news sections put the reader in the shoes of a citizen of this world and let’s them form their own opinion on what’s happening.
The premise of this series is an interesting one, with it comes a handful of interesting questions. Sorting through the various factions, motivations, and points of view gives the reader plenty to think about along the way rather than just power through to the end.
Our two main characters are a bit dull so far; their relationship is very cookie cutter. We haven’t had much of a chance to get a sense of their personalities past the surface level. Luckily, the story doesn’t depend on the dynamic of these two characters.
As events are unfolding, a devious plot starts to peek its head out. Zack Kaplan didn’t need too long to hook readers into this world. This comic is an easily digestible, high concept sci-fi examination of human beings and how we’d respond to extraterrestrial business propositions. If Kaplan can flesh out our two main characters more, this book would gain an even deeper layer.
Port Of Earth‘s art reminds me a lot of the fantastic Men In Black cartoon. It’s darker but doesn’t shy away from fun designs. There’s a gray film over the reader’s eye, almost like you’re looking at these pages through a gray lens.
Vladimir Popov does some interesting color work in a book that’s mostly black, gray, and white. When our two main officers are in the tunnel, searching for their alien perpetrator in the dark, he plays with the splashes of light. The speckled background and shadows give this more of a noir appeal than you would expect.
When the action gets going, Andrea Mutti flexes a muscle we hadn’t really seen much of yet. The fast-paced chase sequence flows effectively and picks up the pace of the book rapidly. His creature and structure design are delightfully intricate. Every alien we’ve seen so far has been unique and interesting to look at.
While it’s not an absolutely perfect book, there’s more than plenty to love about Port Of Earth. As the series continues, and we get to know our cast more, this could potentially be one of the top sci-fi comics heading into 2018.