Things are getting weird for the island and this issue is poised for a major confrontation with the corral’s creature and the island’s inhabitants. Is it good?
Surface Tension #3 (Titan Comics)
Well a lot happens in this issue, I can promise you that. What exactly happened, I’m not quite sure, but it was certainly entertaining. The last issue was definitely a letdown from the initial hook of the series introduction and this one asserts a similar intensity that we saw in that first issue. Unlike the first issue however, while the storyline itself may be building the writing is growing weaker. The characters continue to have their awkward and cliché conversations, such as the dialogue building up to the town leader’s last stand.
Luckily, this issue got away with some subpar writing because it upped the ante in the action department. This issue kicks off with Meg receiving a premonition of what the corral entity has in store for humanity which leads directly into our group of characters discovering what’s become of the poor innocent baby as seen in the final pages of issue #2. That scene is a straight up riot. It’s so over the top that it borders on funny, but ultimately remains awesome and fulfills our thirst for the sci-fi horror Jay Gunn has been promising.
The comic does unfortunately slow down for a period as it transitions into some backstory between Meg and Mary and the events that preceded Meg becoming infected with the sea sickness. This is where the issue gets strange as Meg undergoes hypnosis and recalls a past hypnosis session which results in a psychedelic headtrip (It’s like hypnosis-ception on acid). The visions involve both the corral, Meg’s ex-boyfriend Erik and a mysterious shell person, all of which are able to enter Meg’s consciousness. This results in seven pages of truly amazing Gunn art and some of the brightest, most eye popping panels you’ve ever seen. Granted, I don’t really understand what it all means, but it looked amazing.
What is that you ask? Fuel for your nightmares, that’s what.
By this issue we’re clear on Gunn’s strengths and weaknesses as a comic creator. Strengths: Colors, surreal images, and overall plot. Weaknesses: Dialogue and close up face shots. For some odd reason, Cassel, the island’s leader, looks terrible in every close up panel. It’s like he had botched plastic surgery and now he’s stuck with a lumpy, misshapen face. Usually the females are pretty good, but the males, specifically Cassel need a lot of work because it upsets me deeply as you can tell.
Is It Good?
Surface Tension hits more than it misses in issue #3, largely due to the multiple action sequences and the amazing artwork. Gunn still needs to work on sections of awkward dialogue and Cassel’s face, but other than that, Surface Tension still holds promise.