Albert the Alien is the story of an intergalactic exchange student and his journey on earth. Don’t be quick to pass on this though; this was actually a very entertaining story full of video game and nerd references. The real show stealer is the art. Oh, that art style is beautiful. The character designs add to the humor of the story, while the color makes everything pop off the page. The first issue is pretty simple; Albert has to pee while at school. He’s assigned the hall pass which is a mask of Solid Snake’s face and begins to make his way to the bathroom. Unfortunately another student sent a text to the school bully Wally and now he’s ditched class in order to come harass Albert. He starts in on him until a hall monitor comes by and slaps a detention on his two cohorts while he and Albert hide around the corner. Wally makes Albert an offer; if he’ll get him back to class he won’t bully him for a week. Albert still has to pee, but he takes the offer and their journey begins!
The second issue actually has two stories. The first is about Albert and his friend Gerty going to the movies to see “Package of Pain”, but arriving too late and not making it into the sold out show. Wally the bully appears after not getting into the movie either and talks them both into trying to sneak into movie. The second story is about Albert’s first day at school and basically how he and Gerty met.
While I would definitely describe the series as all-ages, I would say that it’s kid friendly as well. Granted there are jokes that are for an older audience like the Solid Snake mask, but then there are things like word searches, cross-word puzzles and mad lips at the back of the issue, which at first glance would appear to a younger audience. Not that the older crowd couldn’t find enjoyment, but our initial reaction is to skip something of this nature.
The writing is very strong. Albert’s character is relatable, but he does come across as an alien. Granted our society isn’t running in fear of him which is what would likely happen, but he’s still alien in many ways. All of the characters in general are very well rounded and fleshed out. By Wally’s appearance in the second issue, you know what to expect from him with both his dialog and actions. While the stories are pretty simple and follow the format of “Albert does (something)” it’s that simplicity that allows the writing and characters the chance to shine.
As I said in the beginning I really enjoyed the art. The coloring is so vibrant and gives the entire series a unique look. Even though this is a creator-owned series and self-published, not for one second do you get the impression that it’s amateur while reading it. The art brings the story to life and the visual gags are great. Honestly I thought I was reading and Image title, but quickly remembered that it wasn’t the case.
I originally only set out to read the first issue, but after finishing it I instantly jumped into the second. It’s a fun series and one of the best all-ages titles I’ve read all year. The world of the story is wholesome and humorous and frankly the industry needs more books like this; comics that rely on strong writing and art rather than gimmicks and tradition and can still teach a moral lesson.
Writer: Trevor Meuller
Price: 1st Issue - $.99 2nd Issue – $2.99