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Review: Xenoholics #1

Alien abductions and the people who love them.  It's the debut of a brand new series published by Image Comics!



Comic Review Cover

Credits & Solicit Info:


Xenoholics #1 (MR)

Story: JOSHUA WILLIAMSON
Art: SETH DAMOOSE
Cover: DAN DUNCAN

Price: $3.50
Diamond ID: AUG110412
On Sale: October 19, 2011

Are you addicted to aliens? Late night Encounters? Abductions? Probes? The XenoHolics are here to help!

Because everyone thinks they're a bunch of nutcases, a support group that claims aliens abducted them try to prove that aliens are real. But that's much easier said than done and they find themselves caught up in not just ONE government conspiracy, but TWO. Oh, yeah and along the way they learn who is lying about being abducted – and who is telling the truth.

Presenting a twisted new series about aliens and the crazy people who believe in them, by creators JOSHUA WILLIAMSON (Superman/Batman, Dear Dracula), and SETH DAMOOSE (I Hate Gallant Girl) with covers by DAN DUNCAN (TMNT).



Review:


An experience is rarely more powerful than when it's shared.  Whether it's a joyous occassion or a sad one, we seek out those who have been through what we've been through.  We search for understanding.

That's really where the heart of Xenoholics #1 comes from.  Under all of the craziness and humor, it's about a pretty real and distinctly human need. 

There is a dark streak to Xenoholics, though.  When a man named Bob joins a support group for alien abductees, he finds some of the most depressed, dysfunctional people he could have imagined (that includes the doctor who runs the group).  Xenoholics #1 quietly unveils a type of abductee culture, likening the experience to an addiction in terms of its psychological toll on those affected as well as how they live their lives in the wake of their experience.  While most people become dead ends in society, others cash in and become wealthy media sensations.  Some, like Bob, are still just trying to figure out what their new life means and what it will be like.  Moreover, anybody from any walk of life is susceptible to having this happen to them.  It's a smart, subtle way of establishing the world of the comic amongst all the attendant jokes about probing. 

It's also a story that is told very smoothly and effortlessly.  Writer Joshua Williamson is very strong with scene transitions, which creates a fast-paced atmosphere that throws a lot of information at the reader (which is pretty rare for what is basically a character piece).  The plot of the first issue alone packs in enough mysteries and twists to keep you engaged, and the characters are wacky and memorable.  All of this is rendered by Seth Damoose in a dynamic, cartoony, colorful style that's clear and distinctive.  It's great to look at, though Damoose does goof a bit in the panel-to-panel storytelling in one scene (a minor blip in an otherwise well-drawn issue).  All the same, he makes the world look appropriately chaotic and weird, and it's a lot of fun.

Which is the main takeaway from this issue.  Xenoholics #1 is just a really fun comic full of crazy characters and a wild premise.  It brings in a lot of depth and pathos as well, so it's enjoyable on a couple of different levels.  It's almost certain that there's more wildness to come (the first page is something that actually takes place in issue five, according to the narrator, so we get a glimpse of where the book will eventually end up), but there's already a lot at play in this issue, including a good cliffhanger that makes us await the second issue with bated breath. 





Review by: Royal Nonesuch
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About the Author - Royal Nonesuch


As Senior Media Correspondent (which may be a made-up title), Royal Nonesuch tends to spearhead a lot of film and television content on The Outhouse. He's still a very active participant in the comic book section of the site, though. Nonesuch writes reviews of film, television, and comics, and conducts interviews for the site as well.  You can reach out to him on Twitter or with Email.
 

 


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