Matt Kindt has this wonderful way of retelling you aspects of the story you already know, but in a way that’s new. I would be lying if I said that I didn’t have some grasp of everything that’s presented in this issue and yet it’s the minor reveals; the minor inclusions that tie everything together so nicely and make for a refreshing story. Personally I find Kindt to be an incredible story-teller, but particularly so on this series. Unlike his other comics, here he can explore and push the boundaries of the narration. Now while his liner writing has become a bit of a normalcy for his writing, you never know what he’s going to do with it in a particular issue. Point in case with this issue he presents a conversation that leads all the way up to the final scene. Seems kind of whatever right? Well it’s not, but we’ll come back to this.
The issue itself is about Lyme’s life. We find him on a job with Duncan and he’s talking about his plans to propose to his handler/girlfriend. From there we see everything that follows including Lyme’s meltdown in Zanzibar and his discovery of Meru. What we see for the first time is his love for Meru. That’s very different because at this point if you’ve been reading the story then you know that Lyme is a bit of a fucker for how he’s interfered in Meru’s life and for his own selfish needs… kind of. We really do see a new side of Lyme and how he would do anything to protect Meru because she’s his little girl. Not by blood, but by tragedy and that bonds them forever.
The entire issue is a walk-through of Lyme’s life, not everything, but the important parts. The thing is it’s not for the reader. Sure that’s the brilliance of narratives that you can present something new and different for the reader to enjoy, but in actuality we’re just watching Lyme’s thoughts as he journey’s back from a coma. This is where the two narratives tie in as the conversation in the liner is about Lyme in the coma. He’s hearing their every word so again it’s not for the reader, but rather for Lyme. We’re reading what his ears hear. We’re seeing what his mind is seeing and the memories he’s experiencing. We are essentially in the coma with Lyme because we are Lyme in this issue. Everything is from his POV.
Since it’s been a while since I wrote a review for Mind MGMT I get the rare chance to comment on how the art has changed. I’ve been reading this series for two years now and one of the greatest things about it has been that rare opportunity to see Kindt grow as an artist. He continues to grow with each story arc and really each issue. He still has these incredible perspectives that he does, but they’ve definitely been toned down as the series has gone on.
There was on particular panel that caught my eye on page nine. It’s the bottom left panel in which we see Lyme’s eye in the reflection of his sunglasses. It’s my favorite panel of the issue with the last page being a close second. I’ve never seen a panel like this and yet it’s something that everyone that’s worn sunglasses has seen. It’s also important because it shows Lyme with eyes, which is a running element in this story. He shows us his eyes over and over in the flashbacks which is very intentional.
The last page is also incredible because it plays directly into what I was saying about the narration being entirely from Lyme’s POV. At that point you see exactly what the blind man can’t and the details and perspective are awesome. Kindt’s details continue to increase which only makes his art more amazing to look at and soak up.
Dark Horse has this marked as a “Starting Point” which is accurate. It does recap the series to an extent, but in a way that only Kindt can. There are some very key parts to this issue that I’m leaving out because they do change how you’ve been viewing Lyme and adds two important elements to his backstory. There’s one year left of Mind MGMT and let me tell you there’s no better place to jump on then right here.
Writer/Artist/Creator: Matt Kindt Publisher: Dark Horse Comics Price: $3.99 Release Date: 7/30/14 Format: Ongoing, Print/Digital