There are very few comics that manage to craft a realistic world, populate it with realistic characters and also remain funny the entire time. That’s exactly what Ryan Ferrier and Valentin Ramon have done with D4VE. Oh and everything I described in the beginning… well they're robots. Androids I guess you could say since I don’t want to be branded “robophobic.” That’s right guys and gals, we lost and the robots have taken over our mundane lives. That is in fact where we find D4ve, sitting behind his desk daydreaming about his glory days as a bad-ass Defense-bot when his boss Fr4nk walks in and busts him. Fr4nk tells him he better “upgrade up” and that basically nothing he’s doing is worth a shit. The story continues with D4ve as he heads home for the day and continues to be lost in nostalgia, which walks the reader through the events that led to a world run and populated by androids. Basically humans got lazy and robots got smarter; then they killed all the humans and worked on the rest of the galaxy. It’s D4ve’s presentation that makes it hilarious and fun to go through. At one point he picks up a picture from his desk and strokes the frame. When the reader sees the picture, it’s of D4ve wearing his metals and saluting. D4ve is a warrior trapped behind a desk and dealing with his mid-robo-life crisis.
The story is hilarious. Mostly because it’s androids acting like humans. Day jobs, coffee and parades; they basically become trapped in the same routines that made the humans lazy without even realizing it. The story is interesting and the world is very clever and imaginative. There’s a part of all of us that can relate to D4ve, especially if you’ve ever worked a soul-sucking job. What really got me though was the humor. The jokes are spot on and have the perfect pacing with the story. Some of the computer lingo used is stand out hilarious and will likely have you lifting the dialogue into your everyday life. You never get punch-drunk from laughter as you’re given plenty of in-between scenes that break the comedy and progress the plot.
There’s also a ton of physical and visual humor in the story thanks to the artwork. There’s a scene at a strip club with some great visual nods to other robots, but also some great visuals gags as well. The story and art, work in perfect tandem. The character designs are unique, but have a familiar look. I’m sure there are plenty of influences, but overall these robots stand on their own. The amount of detail that the artwork has is very impressive. From the line work to the coloring, everything has a rich photorealistic quality to it. What works for the artwork is that it’s androids. That makes it visually interesting and distracts you from how much the setting resembles a slightly more advanced version of our current society. Upon its release it will be one of if not the best looking book that Monkey Brain has published.
I haven’t laughed at a comic so hard since Buddy Cops and that was a great one-shot. I’m definitely looking forward to more of D4VE and will be picking up a digital copy upon its release later this month. The creative team has done a fantastic job creating a world that is funny and yet realistic and yes that’s weird to say when it’s all about androids. That’s why it’s brilliant. D4ve comes across as a real dude and the world he lives in is a shadow of our own. Don’t miss out on this series you’re only hurting yourself if you do.
Writer: Ryan Ferrier Artist: Valentin Roman Publisher: Monkey Brain Inc Price: $.99 Release Date: 11/20/13