Review – The Fiction #1 (of 4) (BOOM! Studios)

Click to enlarge.

Click to enlarge.

Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Author: Curt Pires
Artist: David Rubín
Release Date: 17th June, 2015

Fiction is a new four-part series from BOOM! Studios. I was immediately a bit conflicted when I began reading this; it’s so close in theme to The Unwritten (a series I personally loved) which has recently finished it’s run. In fact, the cover wouldn’t be out of place in that series, which made me wonder. Having read the issue several times now, I actually think perhaps it’s done in deference which is pretty cool.

My apprehension about similarities didn’t last long as I started reading it, I found myself enjoying the story to the point I was at the end of the comic before I knew it. The story introduces us to a group of friends that find a book (called True Fiction) which allows them to transport into the world that book describes. Scary, at first, then magical, the four friends travel through the stories in the book until they suddenly notice one of them has disappeared. Now 15 years after this incident, a second friend has disappeared into the book, prompting the final two (now) estranged friends to go back into the book to look for them, but when they enter the world inside the book that they knew has been destroyed….

As I said, there are definite thematic similarities to The Unwritten, use of typeface for example, but it should not be thought of as a copy. I think there is an interesting story here, and the way Pires has written the piece makes the story flow and extremely easy to read and follow. You really are at the end before you know it. In fact, it’s so easy to read that you could almost miss how great the artwork is.

The modern day panels are very dark and moody, using long horizontal or vertical frames with characters and elements placed on the left or right for maximum impact. Shorter frames have most of the elements placed centrally, or use varying camera angles which give the subjects more interest.

Clever use of more muted colours for the scenes set in the past remind of you of looking at old photos from the 70’s or 80’s where colour matching wasn’t that great and nearly everything looked brown somehow (you know the type of photo I am talking about). The frames are a lot more ‘busy’ than the more minimalist art in the present day panels. There is also one really clever drawing that gives away who is probably the big bad in this story(!)

When inside the book everything is in full Technicolor and it feels like the panels should almost be glowing, like some kind of lucid dream state when everything comes alive. Again, this is thematic and other-worldly.

This clever use of art, married with an easy flowing story work quite seamlessly together, and this makes an overall enjoyable opening act for this tale.

Worth checking out.

Rating: 3/5.

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The writer of this piece was: Andrew McGlinn
Andrew Tweets from @Jockdoom.

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