I couldn't really describe Argent Starr in any real detail. Its fluff, a bit overstuffed with too many characters and plotlines that I couldn't quite follow the action or motivations of the cast. The book is pretty pleased with its own coolness, even including a glossary of over a dozen alien slang words for you to consult if you want to decode some of the comic's dialogue. And you know what? I kind of dug it.
It tries a little too hard, and its influences are pretty obvious, but unlike some books I read that nip from familiar writers, this one is kind of fun in its incoherence and pop-culture pastiche.
The story follows...well a bunch of people. But the main character seem to be an amateur magician and 20th Century enthusiast, living in the distant future with a heavily armed Latina bodyguard and a Spanish speaking black cat that has the enhanced intelligence of a six year old. Meanwhile, a heist of a government facility is taking place, involving some old alien wreckage. Meanwhile, two aliens with mysterious intentions complain about English and go gambling in Vegas. Meanwhile, one of our antagonists shows us a different way of eating Jello.
I'll have to read this one again I think. Not because it's particularly smart or in any way profound, but just because it's such a neat mess of weirdness smashing together that I want to try and understand. The writing is actually kind of charming, comfortably artificial to fit our cast of weirdos. I'd kind of compare it to The Adventures of Buckaroo Banzai Across the 8th Dimension, where you aren't convinced that any of it is really going to make sense, but your kind of hooked anyway. Not to oversell it, I just have a weakness for that kind of thing when it's done properly.
The art by co-writer Aletmus ranges from pretty cool to acceptable. He's got a slick style that looks very digital, but it isn't always confidently developed enough to meet the comic's ambitions. The colors are a weak spot as well, sometimes matching the line-work wonderfully, and sometimes coming off as amateurishly muddy. Additionally, the lettering is occasionally cluttered and distracting, not one of my frequent hang ups, but when it's a problem it really handicaps the reading. Overall the visuals of the book aren't nearly enough to turn me off of it, and in general just illustrates room to grow and nothing more serious.
It's a weird messy book. Some of you would probably hate me for recommending it, but I enjoyed it and would definitely be game for future issues. Is it going anywhere? In this kind of book, does it matter? I don't know, but I'll show up to find out.
Writers: Lyn T. Byrd & Altemus Artist: Altemus Publisher: Krel Komix Price: $4.99 (each) Website