Writer: Jeff Lemire
Artist: Dustin Nguyen
Summary from Comixology:”As the brutal robot hunting Scrappers close in on TIM-21, the events that first brought him to the mining colony on the outer edges of space are revealed.”
I thought the first issue of Descender was absolutely fantastic. It laid the groundwork for what seems to be an epic, science-fiction tale that is one part Mass Effect (the Harvesters) and another part A.I. (Tim-21) with post-apocalyptic space drama thrown in for good measure. That being said, if you try to read this second issue before reading the first, you are going to be so very lost.
Lemire and Nguyen are crafting a beautiful, thought-provoking story that happens to be set in space, which is refreshing with the myriad of space westerns that seem to be lining the shelves lately. I loved the way the creators weave Tim-21’s creation/back-story in with the current narrative. The left pages show Tim’s attempted escape from the robot-hunters known as “Scrappers,” while the right pages show snippets of his creation and upbringing with his adoptive family (he is a companion bot, which is like a really advanced Tamagotchi except he is actually helpful and you don’t stuff him under your mattress after a day and a half).
The storytelling is striking, and the tone is matched perfectly by Nguyen’s art. The back-story is laid out in beautiful, sepia-toned black and white, and the way the panels are laid out is fantastic (which is something I rarely notice). This might not make sense unless you enjoy this book, but the scope of Descender is both epic and intimate at the same time.
If you can’t tell, I really enjoy pretty much every aspect of this book.
I couldn’t find anything wrong with this book. If you aren’t into beautifully executed science-fiction, then this might not be the book for you, I guess?
If you aren’t on this title yet, good news – it just started! Your local comic shop almost definitely has a few Descender #1’s lying around, so you can pick up both issues at the same time. Only two issues in, this book is already becoming one of the books that I can’t wait to read each month. 5 out of 5, I couldn’t recommend this book more. Do yourself a favor and go get it.