Written by Guest Contributor: Jordan North I continue to be divided on 'True Lives'. On one hand Gerard Way and Shaun Simon have successfully crafted a vivid and interesting world that feels large and teeming with lives with various motivations and lore that keeps me interested; on the other hand this is a book that sometimes feels like its creating spectacle just for spectacle and more lore just to create more lore and it can feel quite over-saturated at times. Despite the bipolar nature of the project though, the whole thing manages to remain quite a bit of fun when it’s doing things right.
This issue of TLOTFK exists as a pregame to the big conclusion and as an expository romp through characterization and lore that seems to exist to remind you it’s there or too hastily ties plot lines together, Blue the sex android that we rooted for the past few issues is unceremoniously taken out of the picture in the first few panels. A bird-goddess spirit guide thing comes and goes, feeling like its only there to remind this universes Neo that she is “The One” and a woman wears a mask while monolouging before a mind-wipe scene just because masks look scary or something. This stuff all does add to the world but it’s nothing anyone asks for and it all feels like “wouldn’t that be rad” ornamentation rather than anything that add meaningful content to the world. This book is disjointed.
However the story has its charm. If I don’t look too hard into things, the whole story feels like a cool, fun neon-punk joyride that’s serialized every other week and delivered to me in comic form and it all kinds of plays out like some demented B-grade Saturday morning cartoon. It’s by looking at this comic as a flair covered piece of lore that it’s at its most enjoyable.
Art is handled nicely with Dan Jacksons color work in particular adding the visual pizzazz needed to sell all this weird junk (killer Scarecrows!). This is a nice looking comic.
'True Lives' isn’t the best book on the shelf, but it may be the most ambitious, and that alone is worth a look. It doesn’t always hit all the right notes, but if you’re looking for a new world to dive into and have a couple bucks to spare it’s always worth a pickup.
Writer: Gerard Way & Shaun Simon Artist: Becky Cloonan Publisher: Dark Horse Comics Price: $3.99 Release Date: 10/30/13