At what point do we realize being connected all the time, sharing every moment of our lives (no matter how inconsequential) and never actually listening to a second of silence is hurting the human race?
Those are just some of the things The Tomorrows fight to fix as they rebel against a society hellbent on control via marketing and entertainment. Not a bad premise given the times, but is it good?
The Tomorrows #1 (Dark Horse Comics)
This issue opens with our protagonist, Zoey Holloway, making some illegal drawings. They’re illegal simply because they are drawings and the punishment is death. A group of squid armed robots enters to take her out, but she’s saved by a kid with a hoody and a sick lightsaber. It’s a scene that takes all of three pages and from there the issue doesn’t slow down.
It’s safe to say this issue is very punk, with punk ideals and a sentiment for the arts that is honorable and without question. The protagonists only want to be free, but how can you when technology has slowly creeped up and taken over our very minds from underneath us. The higher concept afoot here is strong and one most youth can relate to. On top of this it’s ultimately a story about a team hellbent on saving creativity and the right of self expression. Albeit a hard thing to fight for when we’re all so tuned into TV and the like.
Writer Curt Pires does a fantastic job with this story, partially because there is a very well built world here, but also because so much happens in this issue. After finishing it I thought to myself, “My god is it going to be like this every issue? There’s no way Pires has it in him!” After the opening action sequence we get a terrorist act from The Tomorrows, an introduction to the team and their hideout, a development for Zoey one might imagine occurring in issue #3 in another comic, and a culmination of heroes versus villain to cap it off. There’s a lot here, a lot to like and it all flows so very nicely. To think the contents of this book would fit in a 6 issue arc from the big two makes you wonder why they’re all holding out on us. Luckily Pires isn’t.
The villain is something else really, a combination of rich brat and sexual deviate only he has enough power to make all his fantasies come true. He’s about as young as the Tomorrows but clearly he’s more interested in sociopathic behavior than doing humanity any justices. He’s sick, twisted, and just sane enough to be taken seriously. My kind of villain.
There will be people who get annoyed with how much isn’t explained I’m sure, but considering how fast this issue goes how could there be any time for that? Where the team came from, how the villain got so much power and who on Earth is the dude with the beard are just a few of the many questions you’ll be pondering; all in due time I’m sure. The only other fault I can see is a bit of a drag with exposition at one point, gracefully saved by the characters mentioning it, and an ending that’s a touch melodramatic.
So he’s the bad guy right?
On top of all this the art by Jason Copland is quite nice, reminiscent of The Umbrella Academy in both its color and clarity. Considering how much story is told Copland does a great job keeping things moving but more importantly keeping things understandable. You’ll never feel lost and you’ll always know the emotions of the characters when necessary.
The color by Adam Metcalfe is playful, changing the color of faces to set the scene and mood; it’s not necessarily photorealistic but it looks so gosh darn pretty in all its contrasting glory that it’ll make you oogle the pages that much longer. Why are some characters faces blue is a question you might be asking yourself, but hell it makes sense on a visceral and symbolic level so why not?
I spy an Akira reference!
Is It Good?
This is a fantastic comic book first with great writing and an incredible sense of pace and destination. It’s riding as fast as it wants to and we can only hope to keep up and enjoy it.