Written by: Joshua Hale Fialkov
Art by: Gabo
Publisher: Oni Press
With “The Life After #3” writer Joshua Hale Fialkov and artist Gabo have solidified their book in more ways than one. The much needed exposition we get in this chapter is brief but wonderfully helpful in showing us more of the series’s bizarre world. Gabo also asserts himself as an artist to watch with a style that is reminiscent of Nick Pitarra and a special sense of storytelling. This issue also opens up the story possibilities for Jude and Hemingway: who they are and what kind of journey they have unwittingly set upon.
Fialkov brilliantly dissects an aspect of the revolving door of religions we have had in human history. He plays with the constant reiteration of ideas through Gabo’s gorgeous rendering of a Dante-ian purgatory for those who “pre-dated the current system.” Fialkov hilariously nods to those countless millions who lived before a religion was invented or in an area that religion is unknown to.
Jude has become a strong character whose full power has only been alluded to. Hemingway takes a bit of a backseat in this issue bit still manages to deliver a couple of killer lines that inject some humour into the tale. As the pair traverse the strange world of the after-life Gabo nails the character beats and expressions like the consummate pro he evidently is.
While settings aren’t necessarily Gabo’s greatest strength, the backgrounds really are beautiful. Comics seem to either nail their settings or appear to be set in ambiguous nether-regions; The Life After is one of the former. When we’re given a broad look at how paradise melds with the inferno it’s easy to see why Fialkov was so eager to work with this artist. Gabo is the real deal, folks.
“The Life After #3” continues the short-running tradition of being a work of extraordinary imagination and ingenuity. These are ancient concepts given a modern comic book flair, and it seems to get better with every installment. This seems like the perfect book for the type of people who gravitate toward comic books: so…you!
“The Life After #3” earns 8.2/10