This week, Fourthpoll resulted in a tie. First up is the first issue of the Soliel Science Ficiton book.
Credits & Solicit Info:
Published by Soliel and Marvel Comics
WRITER: FRÉDÉRIC L HOMME
PENCILS: ARNAULD BOUDOIRON
Translation by Stephanie Logan
In the near future, The Arnold Company has developed the Husk, fifteen-foot tall biomechanical suits that are an anatomical addition to their pilot’s body. In Paris, the BMRI police brigade features a special squad of Husk pilots in charge of investigating the most dangerous criminals of their time. This series explores the day-to-day life of these men and the different cases they must confront. Mature
Soliel and Marvel’s partnership has been fairly low-key in the normal fan boy circles, not because the books aren’t exemplarily. Cost probably has a lot to do with that. $5.99 seems like a steep price to pay for a comic, but the book in question is 52 pages long, 48 pages of that is jam packed with Turf level word dense story. This is not a rip off folks.
Husk is a mech book. Set in the distant future where Sim City 3000 like industrial complexes are in the forefront of Paris with the Eiffel Tower still standing. It is a mix of our own world and some kind of Minority Report technological wonderland.
The mechs aren’t your normal Robotech brawlers. This is more like Paltobar. The biomechs are being used to help the police do their jobs. Each Husk is controlled by an interior pilot who is pretty closely interfaced to the big machine. The pilot is helped by a co-pilot who is linked from outside. Together they are a formidable fighting force. However, when one suit goes beserk causing a psychotic break in its operator, the police think they are hunting down a hacker, but is there something more sinister at hand?
The two main characters are Leo and Sarah, a Husk team with a past. It makes for a complicated relationship which is only exacerbated by Sarah’s constant look for pain relief. Her addictive personality probably made her a good choice for the full on interface, but it also makes her judgment suspect and when things start to become clear to her – those around her assume it is just craziness brought on by the malfunctions or her own drug use.
There is even a bit of a Robocop cum Phillip K Dick to the story. The Industrial War complex behind the mech suits may be behind the whole problem, but are not helping matters by wanting the investigation to be hush hush. There is a lot of money to be lost if people lose the idea that Husks are anything less than completely reliable. The source of who is really behind the hacking is obviously going to be the thrust of this three issue mini-series.
While L’Homme brings a sci-fi story that will thrill fans of Hotwire and City of Dust, Boudoiron brings awesome art. There are bright colors showing us the wonders of this technologically advanced society, but there are also dark corners showing the need for a more heavily armed police force. But it doesn’t stop there. Early on, the reader is shown some genetic experiments in mad scientist style vats. The fractal like substance floating around the experiment is wondrous enough, but then there is the reflection of Sarah’s face on the glass and the whole things becomes hyper-realistic for a moment. It is stunning art with a grand sense of design. Kind of like a more subdued Hickman.
Soliel knocks it out of the park again, with another high concept book with top notch illustrations. This one is worth checking out.