From JONATHAN COULTON, the singer-songwriter behind Code Monkey and the Portal songs; MATT FRACTION, the writer of SEX CRIMINALS, CASANOVA, and ODY-C; and drawn by the award-winning Spanish artist of Universe! ALBERT MONTEYS comes SOLID STATE, a graphic novel companion to COULTON's new concept album of the same name.
Two guys, connected by a name and hundreds of years, somehow stand at the end of man's beginning, and the beginning of man's end. But...it's funny? Also kind of a nightmare. But mostly funny? A funny science-FACTion nightmare about the end of everything, but how that's all kind of okay.
Publisher: Image Comics
Number of pages: 128
Weight: 422 g
Dimensions: 251 x 246 x 10 mm
NPR -- Coulton turned to writer Matt Fraction and artist Albert Monteys, who with Coulton's input have taken some of the album's words, images and thematic preoccupations and crafted a graphic novel set largely in a future that will seem familiar to any reader of science fiction: a corporate-owned dystopia where humans have become dutiful, unthinking, unfeeling worker bees attending to menial tasks amid a culture engineered to keep them unthinking and unfeeling. There's plenty of the kind of clever, characterizing touches that Fraction (writer of comics like Sex Criminals, The Invincible Iron Man, and a hugely popular run on Marvel's Hawkeye) is known for on display: When our hapless main character seeks out his employer - a wizened plutocrat floating in a tank of goo whose face is obscured by an enormous visor - the old man offers little more than vague, chirpy platitudes, adding, "You can't tell but I promise I'm winking." Monteys draws characters whose features are are open and expressive, with long, Modigliani faces. The tech that surrounds them exudes an aggressively playful friendliness that's meant to render it innocuous and attractive to the people of this world - and, for precisely that reason, chillingly sinister to readers.
LIBRARY JOURNAL -- Based on a concept and album of the same name by singer/songwriter Coulton, and written by Fraction (ODY-C), this first volume in a new series intertwines the tales of two men separated by hundreds of years: Bob, a worker tasked with charting the course of the moon across the sky in a futuristic world, and the more contemporary Robert, an employee at a popular search engine and social media company disillusioned with his employer's unethical approach to customer privacy. One of them may or may not be dreaming the other, or something. What's certain is that when an accident results in Bob questioning his place in society, and those questions instill a sense of rebellion in Bob's robot friend Robogrande, everyone involved is forced to reckon with the consequences. Artist Monteys (El Jueves magazine) provides innovative page design, expert pacing, and cartooning that makes a cohesive whole of a story that switches between lighthearted satire and heady philosophical exploration as well as centuries-and maybe even planes of existence. VERDICT An intriguing, engaging start to a series that excels at raising interesting questions and remains satisfying even as it falters a little when it comes to providing answers.-TB
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