Review: Black Science #21

It’s been three years since Grant McKay saw any of his crew, including his two children. In those three years a lot has changed, including Grant himself. After a couple issues of self discovery, he has finally pulled himself out of the mud and is ready to find his missing companions. As he rips through dimensions in his newfound ship, he realizes that other versions of himself have also created Pillars and at some point one of them will create one that will end up destroying his universe, which could lead to the destruction of all universes. This idea is no doubt going to reappear later in the arc, but for now is sidelined as Grant closes in on a homing beacon for one of his lost crewmates. Turns out that it’s Rebecca, and she is just a burnt husk of a corpse. McKay’s computer alerts him that this Rebecca belongs only to this dimension and the Rebecca that he knows is still alive and well.

Black-Science-#21-1The rest of the issue shows Rebecca in her new life that she stole from this dimension’s Rebecca. Grant in a fit of vengeance goes about ruining that stolen life. He places the blame on Rebecca for seducing him, for pushing him towards overwork, and pretty much every other negative thing that happened to him thus far. It’s a bit extreme, but then again Grant isn’t really that logical of a guy. Rebecca’s brother and husband reject her, and soon after she breaks down she sees Grant. Realizing what he did she begs him to take her with him, but Grant simply blasts off into another dimension leaving her with the cops closing in.

Black Science #21 is pretty dark. It forgoes the fun, space hopping adventures of the earlier arc for a more introspective one. This is nothing new, especially in this arc, where Grant alone is the main focus of the story. We are left with his internal monologue more often than even in the earlier issues, as his thoughts play out across the pages. Grant seems more focused than ever before, frantically searching for his children, hoping that they aren’t dead. What he finds though is his own crew scattered and broken, when he finally does catch up with his kids there’s no way it can end well.

Remender pushes this arc along while Scalera beautifully fills in the blanks. This arc concludes with issue #21, and hopefully things will heat back up with the next storyline. Grant has had his time in the spotlight, and I’m not so sure there’s that much more to dissect. He’s a fucked up scientist with an anarchist background. He’s done a lot of stupid things in his past, and he is forever trying to atone for them. McKay is an interesting character and a solid protagonist but these five issues with him haven’t been my favorite. Remender writes such fleshed out characters that I want to see the story from all perspectives, not just that of the protagonist. And because of the nature of Black Science (infinite dimensions, infinite possibilities), I have always been hoping for more of that wild energy that I fell in love with during the first few issues. Before the plot became totally clear, and the crew was just trying to get home by any means necessary. Maybe Black Science will never be like that again, and that’s fine, the plot developed and I’m okay with that. I just hope that someone else gets a chance to have a voice rather than just Grant.

[button btn_url="" btn_color="pink" btn_size="large" btn_style="default" btn_outlined="no" link_target="blank" link_rel="" icon_left="" icon_right=""]Score: 3/5[/button]

Black Science #21 Writer: Rick Remender Artist: Matteo Scalera Publisher: Image Comics Price: $3.99 Release Date: 3/30/16 Format: Ongoing; Print/Digital