Review: SEA OF STARS #1 – A New Voyage Begins

FIRST IMPRESSION

An enthralling first entry into perhaps the next great comic story.
Writing/Story
Pencils/Inks
Coloring
Lettering
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Sea of Stars #1 was clearly made by people who are mesmerized and fascinated by Space. Space has always shared an unsettling amount of characteristics with the seas on Earth, especially when used as the setting for science fiction stories. Writers and artists use the vacuous abyss as a stand-in for the now (mostly) discovered and mapped out the ocean. Sea Of Stars #1 definitely fits into this formula and uses this vast unmapped canvas as an obstacle for a Father and his son, Kadyn, to overcome in order to reunite after a giant space whale/shark/eel-thing destroys their ship. Jason Aaron and Dennis Hallum’s script can be speech bubble heavy, but the overall premise is layered with intrigue and mystery. Stephen Green’s art is exceptional in this issue, and Rico Renzi’s colors compliment the art seamlessly. Sea Of Stars could be the next great series to read.

The first scene is an entire piece dedicated solely to explaining how empty space is, which seems to be an integral part of the story. However, to the recently motherless Kadyn, the emptiness isn’t the same beautiful muse that Picard soliloquized over in Star Trek. Space to Kadyn is boring. Space is what is between him and his father ever since his mother died, and the dialogue Aaron and Hallum write for these characters really drive this home.

Some scenes can be too reliant on dialogue, however, especially when Kadyn and his father are talking in the ship. It looks like two whole pages are literally covered with speech bubbles. Perhaps, the layout of these pages could have eased the congestion or even spaced the conversation more, making it longer. But really this is just a minor blip on the radar, and it doesn’t take too much away from the book.

All of this is not even considering the subtleness that Aaron and Hallum use when introducing the main mystery: how is Kadyn breathing in space with a damaged suit and talking to space creatures?

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Porkchop in Space
Space… The Final Frontier… How boring

Green’s art and Renzi’s colors really make this issue. Without their abilities in tandem, it is doubtful Aaron, and Hallum’s script would work as neatly. Once again we’ll go back to the opening shot of Kadyn’s “Porkchop Comet” is seemingly floating amongst the few sparkling stars. The bluish-purple hues mingle amongst each other to create this jazz/sunset-like appearance, which would be a perfect time for a newly widowed father and motherless child to bond over. You can almost hear the smooth horns in the background. Once again, it really sells how barren this team is making space, emphasizing the lack of celestial bodies and moody, emotional colors.

The character designs are equally expressive and creative. The look of awe on Kadyn’s father as the space creature destroys their ship is the perfect amount of “Oh S—“ without being overly corny. And the creature itself is horrifying and massive, like a giant blue, tentacle Moby Dick. The amount of detail displayed when Kadyn is walking amongst the artifacts from the museum is commendable as well. Jared. K Fletcher’s letters are stylized ideally for the story and even encroach their way beautifully onto panels. One specific use of hollowed out letter over the space monster chomping the Porkchop Comet was particularly effective. As a whole, this is some of the best overall art in a comic book this year.

Sea of Stars #1 is a great teaser of a series just about to start. Jason Aaron and Dennis Hallum’s script is mysterious and seemingly well thought out, but the real take away is Stephen Green’s art and Rico Renzi’s colors. Sea Of Stars #1 is simply the result of a dynamic creative team being allowed to flex their muscles, creating a thrilling new series that has only just begun.

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Ben Snyder
A lover of dogs, comics, anime, and beer in that unspecific order. Has a bunch of useless cinema knowledge used only to annoy friends and family.

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