ANCIENT NOISE, ISSUE #1
Writer: David Crispino
Illustrator: Tony Gregori
Colorist: Jasen Smith
Letterer: Nic Shaw
Publisher: Self Published
WHAT IS IT?
Expendable time travel workers venture to the past on behalf of their corporate employer to prep the land for future exploitation and fail spectacularly after an encounter with the land’s indigenous wildlife.
It's “A Sound of Thunder” with red shirts!
WHAT’S IT ABOUT?
In the distant future, time travel is invented and workers are sent back to renovate habitats for businesses to use in the future. During the latest exploration, one group’s journey goes off course, forcing them into a conflict with the land’s wildlife.
The ensuing skirmish forces a hasty retreat and separates the group’s pilot, Jack, from his compatriots, resulting in consequences that could ripple throughout the timestream.
Will Jack be able to fix the damage done to the timeline before it’s too late?
Tony Gregori’s linework is appropriately cartoony for the high concept science fiction premise and over-the-top violence when things go off the rails. And, once things do go off the rails, Gregori’s page layouts effectively sell the chaotic nature of the scene.
Some of the previously mentioned violence was so over-the-top, it became darkly humorous.
Colorist Jasen Smith excels at handling the story’s more “out there” science fiction elements.
Without spoiling the moment, there’s a point during a chase where Gregori and Smith get to go ballistic with their page layout and color choice, making for some of the best pages in the book.
Writer David Crispino’s humorous take on redshirt explorers is an intriguing approach, especially in a time travel story.
The special word balloons Nic Shaw used for a particular character was a nice touch.
The payoff was incredibly satisfying, bringing the opening chapter to a close with a well-executed final gag.
WHAT DOESN’T WORK?
This story has some instances of gore. If that’s not your thing, you’ve been warned.
None of the characters had a chance to stand out. Visually, they’re wearing similar outfits for most of the story, making it difficult to grow attached to anyone.
Even later on, when the characters are out of the suits, there’s not much done to make any of the characters really shine.
There’s a point where the exposition becomes overbearing, taking up too much space and upstaging the art.
WHY SHOULD I READ IT?
Time travel is an inherently fun tool where creators can let loose and break all the toys. Ancient Noise takes this to heart, mixing science fiction adventure with bursts of dark humor for a fast-paced reading experience with kinetic artwork that thrives off the premise’s chaotic nature.
The middle portion of the story sags a bit and the core cast hasn’t had a chance to stand out yet, but if the ending is any indication, issue one is a promising set-up for an even wilder adventure ahead.
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