By Dustin Cabeal
I judged this book by its cover… or rather it’s cover art… and then it’s art. It’s not typically a style of art that I enjoy, and so I admit that looking at 144 pages of it made me weary. But I ain’t no quitter when it comes to comics, and if I start reading something, I finish it. I’m really glad I did because Alexandra Forever: Evolution turned out to be a great read and introduce me to a rich sci-fi world that I would love to read more of. That said, you do have to hang in there until the second chapter to really unlock the charm of this story. Until then, I was confused and wondered if I would even bother reviewing the book. Why? Because it’s batshit crazy.
We start in the middle of a Post Office drop in space. The Post Office now delivers to different planets, and it’s not your run of the mill mail. We meet Alexandra as she joins a crew to deliver some goods when they’re attacked and nearly blown out of the sky. Alexandra survives and uses the laser drill they were going to deliver, to instead blow the spaceship that shot them out of the sky. She does, but not before a little girl randomly shows up. Alexandra isn’t freak out by this, nor was I, but I was rather confused.
Eventually, we find out that Alexandra is the Goddess and the little girl is the All-Mother, and they’re constantly saving the universe from a third force that’s trying to end it. They’ve come to this planet because there’s another of their flock there, but they have other things to do while there… like, save the planet and a conscious lifeform that’s never been identified.
There’s politics; there’s aspects of religion. Hell, there’s even bureaucracy all mixed in with this sci-fi adventure. Alexandra is a strong woman. She’s never the damsel and she’s not the polar opposite either. She’s a woman that doesn’t even like to be called Goddess and occasionally likes to bone an attractive dude. By the end, I loved her character. The supporting character all needed more work, but Alexandra and the protagonists (to which there are many) were very impressive.
The pacing of the story is okay. There is a lot of filler in my opinion. We don’t quite need all that information that we get and early on it feels like the story changes directions a lot. The dialogue flows pretty well, but there’s a lot of conversations. It’s a double edge sword as it feels as if there’s too much talking, but then just the right amount. In the end, I got used to it, and it didn’t matter anymore.
The art, again, isn’t my favorite. I again grew to like it, but there were a lot of strange choices made with the layouts. At one point we see a character on the other side of Alexandra and an extreme close-up of just part of Alexandra’s face. It’s a small panel, but it stuck out like a sore thumb. The action is quite good and as the story goes on the art gets better. The characters were all recognizable which is a big compliment. I read another indie comic recently, and the only reason I knew it was the same two people talking was because they were the only two people talking. The art has its moments, and I’m glad that I gave it a chance.
Overall, I was very happy with this book. I liked the story and that it built an intricate world, but didn’t make the mistake most sci-fi does by trying to give all the info upfront. Sure, I was confused, to begin with, but after that opening, I was eased into the world and had the explanation unfold. That was a much better way of digesting this story and ultimately made me enjoy the world and the characters. I would definitely check out more of Alexandra’s world and hope that there’s more coming from the creators.
Alexandra Forever: Evolution
Writer: D.W. Richards
Artist: Steven Legge
Publisher: Robot Paper