Posted on October 5, 2013 AT 05:34pm
Act I has now come to close, and the plight of Elle Peterssen is not even close to being over. With fifteen issues now in the ether of the comic book world, the complex story begins to really take shape, with ownership of the ideas and practices that make up the themes of the title being claimed by not only the characters, but others involved in the creative team, as well.
Without spoiling this masterful first act (and subsequent closing issue), the story of the comatose Elle takes a major turn as the Jairus plan begins to hit its final hours, Jo and the group working with the Hoodies, and Elle herself over in the Garden all make their own plans in saving or killing the young woman. This issue brings forth some startling information about Elle, something at brings forth the true impacts of Jairus and the life of Elle herself, including a bit of information after the end of the issue that really influences the way this book is presented from an artistic sense.
Writer Jim McCann had mentioned that this issue would really change the whole story, and it really has. The ending revelation really changes the entire dynamic of the book, and with it comes questions that are entirely unanswerable, except to McCann himself. His process throughout all this has been slow and steady, making big reveals at key points and always pointing the reader in several directions at the same time. While the lack of closure in this major arc might be a bit disappointing to some, there is no need to end the journey just yet, and thankfully, McCann and the art team seem to agree.
The biggest revelation about this is one that’s going to cause a major spoiler so please read past this paragraph if that’s a problem. It does, however, really delve into the world ofMind The Gap itself and add an entirely new sense of closeness to the book itself. During the course of the issue, it’s revealed part of the Jairus project either causes Elle to develop (or she’s just born with, it was a bit unclear) Respiratory Distress Syndrome. This causes some major problems later on in the issue, and is eventually revealed to be a major part of not only her coma, but of her life. The biggest surprise to that comes after the end of the issue, however.
McCann, in an incredibly heartfelt letter, revealed to the readers the influence Respiratory Distress Syndrome had on his own life, as he is one of the many afflicted with the disorder. Knowing that, and how it affects McCann’s writing of the book is an incredible thing to see, and reading the vulnerability of McCann himself in his open letter was spectacular, and an incredibly sweet moment for readers who have followed the title.
The art team has done a great job throughout the last fifteen issue, and while the lineup has changed a bit throughout the run, there has never been a dip in quality. With Rodin Esquejo and Arif Prianto working well together on the material from the present that focuses on Elle and the rest of the main cast, Dan MdDaid and Lee Loughridge do a terrific job exploring the past and uncovering the truth about Jairus. This art team has helped McCann carry the narrative throughout the book, an without them, this issue and this series would look and feel much differently.
Summary: While not everything has worked together as well as it was intended to throughout the first act, it’s been a wild, fun and incredibly beautiful ride to experience. This issue brought a ton of issues to a close and opened up a new major plot point, one that will begin to carry act two when it arrives in the near future. With spectacular writing and gorgeous artwork, this issue keeps the high standard of the others, really capping off the first act in a big way. Congrats to the entire creative team for making such a great book, and one that will hopefully last a lot longer.
Pros: Amazing artwork, terrific writing.
Cons:Small plot points get a bit fuzzy.
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