Written by: Rick Remender
Published by: Image Comics
Ever since Black Science lost its lead character in Grant McKay, the series has been staggering a little bit and searching for a foothold in a new hero for us to invest in. By the end of this issue that problem is resolved and storytellers Rick Remender and Matteo Scalera are back on the path to greatness. This series has all of the hallmarks of a masterpiece and with a few more months we may be using a certain reverence when we discuss this series.
As always Scalera’s art is the great strength of the issue. Even after nine issues he still has the ability to please and surprise with a multitude of great spreads and designs. Characters are expressive and the whole thing continues to be a messy, ink blotted, colourful, tapestry that provides exactly the kind of atmosphere a zany romp like this needs. The plot and set pieces revolve around a crazy interpretation of something like string theory and the art has continued to change and evolve, making every unique universe seem different than the rest. Dean White continues to impress with painted art and wonderful colours as well.
Remender is a writer that knows how to make narrative exposition effective. On occasion narration can be overdone and actually detract from the story and distract a reader from the art, but what we experience in “Black Science #9” is the ideal mix of vagaries and epic monologue. When the issue closes it’s tough not to be impressed at how this story has progressed so far.
But all of that comes at the end of this issue. To start, we’re given an interesting bit of character work that fleshes out even more characters. Though we may have leaned heavily on McKay as the pivot for this story early on, it is clear that Remender is trying to get us to empathize with other members of the cast.
I meant it when I said I thought that this might be considered a masterpiece very soon. It has all the hallmarks of a great science fiction romp and you can never be sure what’s going to happen next. The world building is incredible and the characters feel alive and easy to empathize with. The art is pure spectacle and can hang with the best on the shelves, today. Of course, this could all go off the rails next month but there are plenty of reasons to trust Remender and Scalera.
“Black Science #9” delivers another installment of pulse-pounding action as well as the finely tuned character drama that we’ve come to expect. Consistently this comic has managed to change and evolve and perhaps this has occurred too quickly for some readers, but it can’t be said that these creators are happy with stagnation. With spectacular artwork that includes tons of spreads and dynamic panel designs, this is one of Image’s best series, page-for-page. Remender and Scalera are crafting what is perhaps the best work of both of their careers – a greater compliment cannot be made.
“Black Science #9” earns 8.9/10