Louis Falcetti writes for Bleeding Cool;
Is writing comics that easy or does Kurtis Wiebe just make it seem that way? The man drops two new books this week from Image/Shadowline, Grim Leaper and debris. While Leaper concludes it's weirdo, gory, heartbroken tale of weirdo, gory, heartbroken love debris is just getting going…still. While issue #1 explodes like a wild umbral shattering the garbage strewn landscape, issue #2 takes it's time to tell it's tale.
Issue #2 maintains the high level of artistic achievement as issue #1, with Rossmo continuing to prove his versatility and range from project to project. It also maintains it's high level of story telling artistry as this intelligent, engaging story continues to unfold. The pace at which it's unfolding is what has me feeling a little down after this most recent issue though. Maybe I don't understand the Image model or maybe my comic addiction has gotten to a point where the same amount of the stuff just won't do it for me anymore, but four issues to tell this story seems criminal. Especially considering that half of the series is over and barely anything has happened beyond our protagonist Maya killing a colossal, her home being attacked and the water destroyed, her trainer being killed and yeah alright, so maybe a bunch of things have happened. That doesn't change the fact that we're only now, at the end of issue #2 actually starting the quest for Athabasca.
This issue sees Maya hooking up with an exiled member of her community, Kessel, who lives in an abandoned amusement park. We sort of pick up that there may have been a relationship between Maya's trainer, Calista (who I'm really sorry to report, I didn't realize was a woman until this issue) and Kessel has someone's braid in a jar, which I think is sweet but I also connect with heartbroken, dudes who live alone at the moment so maybe it's really creepy. Kessel starts off all anger and distrust but by the end of the comic he's suited up and ready to roll, or I guess walk as the case may be.
This comic is a winner on all fronts. Rossmo's used this anime looking panel twice now to show Maya realizing the imminent danger. It also highlights the beautiful use of color in the book, as the background for characters can shift panel to panel, from red to orange to yellow to even panels where it seems as though Maya is fighting in a void. This book also contains a fair number of splash pages, which can be annoying to some fans who demand the most word bang for their buck, but when the splash pages look as good as they do here, it's hard to complain about anything.
Debris is Battlestar Galactica meets Wall*E. It's the story of a epic (well, epic-ish, would The Odyssey be called an epic if it was only for chapters?) quest to do what all epic-ish quests at their heart aim for, to save the human race or at least one's own particular corner of it. It's a sci-fi book with an environmentalist heart that hides beneath gorgeous linework and smart characters. It's easily one of the most enjoyable books of the year and I can't wait to see where it ends up. I just wish the end was farther away.