Review: City – The Mind in the Machine #3

The last issue of this series picked up compared to the first issue. Now I’m torn with which issue I liked more. Whereas the second issue saw our main character Ben learning and developing his new skills, the third issue has him becoming more and more in tune with them. I wouldn’t say he’s mastered them just yet, but he’s definitely getting there as you’ll see by the end of the issue. Unfortunately for Ben the more he absorbs, the more he becomes a threat to Homeland Security. This issue begins with Ben discovering the man who left a bomb on the train that took his eyes. He can’t bring up anything on the man, but he now knows his face. The problem is that Mr. Callahan knows that he’s found him and he doesn’t look happy about it at all. He tells Ben to let him handle it and that anything else he finds should be passed along to him. Ben blows him off and heads home for the day. On the way out though he bumps into Chloe the woman he’s pined for and eventually blew his chances with when his brain began pulling up too much info about her on their date. He reveals his secret to her in order to apologize and she’s pretty shocked.

All her feelings of disgust are washed away after seeing his eyes and she gives him a chance to explain everything. The more he tells her, the more they bond and eventually their ten-minute conversation turns into a date. It’s broken up though when Ben’s facial recognition software can’t identify a man looking in their direction. It’s interesting because it’s as if Ben is running programs in the background while on the date.

City03_cvr-SUBThere was a lot of character development in this issue. The last issue built the plot and made us more familiar with Ben, but this issue made him feel like a fleshed out character for the first time since the story started. Chloe is also a three-dimensional character with this issue as well. No longer is she the girl looking for a date, but rather a powerful woman to have in Ben’s corner. Their conversation was a good chunk of the issue and all of it was enjoyable to read.

The art continues to shine with this series. The strongest aspect is still the camera/pixel view that Drew Moss uses gives the story a real world look and feel. Without it the story wouldn’t be nearly as successful. I’ve seen more of Moss’ artwork lately, but frankly his work here is some of his best. He’s complemented by colorist Mark Englert who again helps with the real world vibe. Ben’s eyes have a cool look and it’s hard not to like their blue coloring.

If you’ve missed out on this series you’re a bit late to the game. There are the usual ways of catching up either back issues or digital of course. You could wait for the trade, but there is something thrilling about following this issue monthly.

Score: 5/5

Writer: Eric Garcia Artist: Drew Moss Publisher: IDW/Darby Pop Publishing Price: $3.99 Release Date: 4/23/14 Format: Mini-Series, Print/Digital