Group Review – Low #1 (Image Comics)

Low01_CoverA - CopyPublisher: Image Comics
Writer: Rick Remender
Artist: Greg Tocchini
Release Date: 30th July 2014.


Chris B Says…

Yes.

If I could write a one-word review, that would be all that would be needed in this instance. Remender really does seem to be untouchable these days as a Sci-Fi writer, with what could almost be described as a trademark style, and this is a very, very solid first issue.

Set in a world where humans are living underwater and fighting to survive in a future where the Sun is expanding though the Solar System, we find ourselves following a family as their children prepare learn how to use what can only be described as the family exoskeleton? Without delving any further into the story to avoid spoilers, shit goes down, and true to anyone that’s read Remenders recent work on Black Science, it goes down hard. Full of snappy dialogue, suspense, and fast-paced action, Remender is fast becoming one of my favourite writers. From the get go, you find yourself immediately warmed towards the family and the book had a nice Lost in Space feel to it.

Greg Tocchini also deserves some sort of award. Not necessarily for how stunning the book is, or how haunting he makes the book look, or even for the sheer brutality later on. He deserves some sort of award for managing to “get” what the idea of the book is. It’s a strange thing for a writer/artist team to be perfectly in sync, and for that to resonate from the page……. or at least i really hope that was the case!

Hands-down the best part of the book for sure is the piece of writing by Remender at the back, well worth the read, and worth the cover charge alone. Trust me.

End of gushing.  Buy this.  Now.

Rating: 5/5.


Dean Says…

Low is the brand new Sci-Fi adventure series about how humanity copes when it is at its lowest point. Literally. The sun has expanded to the point where humans can no longer survive on the surface of the planet. And, amidst all the radiation on the planet, humans have survived in the deep depths of the ocean in their last hope of rebuilding civilisation.

The dialogue alone shows just how much passion Remender put into making this book. It has some of the smartest dialogue I’ve seen in a comic and characters have real, thought provoking conversations. Credit also goes out to artist Greg Tocchini who just seems to be completely in sync with Remender. He knows just how to move the characters across the page and how to use the scale of the world to impact the character’s conversations.

This series was written at a time when Remender was feeling a little low himself. He wanted to write a book which highlighted hope even when times are at their worst. In this he created Stel Caine the main protagonist of the story who is the living personification of hope and optimism. Without spoiling, Stel has her world torn away right in front of her eyes and yet, in that moment she turns her grief into power and promises that she will have justice.

I could go on and on about this book but it all just comes back to the same point. This book is fantastic! Everything about this book from the writing, the art and the story just blends together so perfectly in this underwater Sci-Fi adventure.

Rating: 5/5.


Stanley Stu-Brick Says…

New Sci-Fi is always a tricky proposition. How many sub-genres can you plunder before the proverbial well runs dry? Well fortunately for us, and probably unfortunately for others, this title has Rick Remender in the mix, and all is exceptionally well.

As the story goes, the sun has shone its brightest and last and has become so powerful that no longer can humanity withstand its glow. Deepest oceans are the last and best solution for human kind to survive. Rick Remender has again written a book with such gravity and excitement, it makes for an very enjoyable read and leaves a taste for more. Its not something he has ever struggled with but here, as with Black Science, he injects the book with perfectly chosen dialogue and situations in which to tell a great story.

Kudos must also go to the artwork by Greg Tocchini, images that give the words another level of gravitas and resonates at just how fiercely the struggle for life must keep going. A perfect combination has led to a fantastic first issue, and a springboard onto the next.

Good Sci-Fi isnt easy to read, let alone write, so its pretty special we have Low to keep us going.

Rating: 5/5.


Laurence Says…

The convention exclusive cover for Rick Remender and Greg Tocchini’s Low made me want to read it. Yes I judge a (comic) book by its cover at least when I’m not familiar with the characters, concept/genre, or the writers & artists. It a way of broadening my horizons I suppose but at the end of the day if you don’t get a good story you hopefully have some great art work or vice versa. Low gives you a little bit of both but unfortunately doesn’t specifically give you one or the other.

A lot has to happen at the beginning of a story in order to set up the story, world, and its players. This introductory issue throws so much information at you it’s disorienting. The technical jargon, thousands of years of history, and (rich?) mythology, makes it’s a struggle to get through and you feel like you’re just trying to catch up to everything that’s going on, which is odd considering it’s only the first issue. Remender blows the world wide open from the get-go that it ends up overshadowing everything in it. The world itself is so unfamiliar that without the proper context the reader is left feeling isolated.

Tocchini’s art conveys the organized chaos described previously. There is so much detail put into this thing that people won’t be able to notice everything. The colors are vibrant and spectacular. The unique design makes the world all its own, but the sketch lines make it difficult to track what’s going on from panel to panel that it blurs out the action, structures, and/or character(s).

I can appreciate what they’re trying to do but it was just too much. The slow start made it difficult to invest in the characters but once the tragic ending locked into place I found myself filled with Stel’s “irrational optimism” at least for the characters. Remender and Tocchini are taking some pretty big risks with this sci-fi concept; it’s difficult to recommend because it could go either way, but as they say no risk no reward, let’s hope it pays off.

Rating: 2/5.

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