Written by Alex Paknadel
Art by Eric Scott Pfeiffer
Letters by Colin Bell
Published by BOOM! Studios
Release Date: 05/06/2015
What’s to Love: Our long tradition of breaking new talent—like Rafael Albuquerque (The Savage Brothers, American Vampire), Emma Rios (Hexed, Pretty Deadly), and Declan Shalvey (28 Days Later, Moon Knight)—continues with the debut of Alex Paknadel and Eric Scott Pfeiffer, two new creators whose extensive world-building in the sci-fi thriller Arcadia evokes comparisons to epics like Game of Thrones, The Matrix, and Astro City.
What It Is: When 99% of humankind is wiped out by a pandemic, four billion people are “saved” by being digitized at the brink of death and uploaded into Arcadia, a utopian simulation in the cloud. But when Arcadia begins to rapidly deplete the energy resources upon which the handful of survivors in the real world (aka “The Meat”) depends, how long will The Meat be able—and willing—to help? Featuring the first of five connecting covers by Matt Taylor.
- This story takes a well used concept and molds it into its own unique construct.
- In the near future a global viral pandemic ‘kills’ billions and leaves the world in fragmented chaos. To ensure the survival of humanity the government takes radical action that will have vast ramifications.
- Written by Alex Paknadel, art by Eric Scott Pfeiffer, letters by Colin Bell.
- There are many storylines and concepts weaving through the first issue of Arcadia. I think there is a lot of interesting potential for this comic as the stories intersect and relationships reveal themselves. I found the ‘Arcadia’ reading experience to be complex and thoughtful.
- The concept of hooking up billions of people to a super computer to become simulated cybernetic lifeforms is one that has been used in many platforms to varying degrees. I am pleasantly surprised to find that Paknadel has created a compelling story with its own spin and intriguing plot.
- There are interesting philosophic aspects to this story. The first issue sets up many intriguing possibilities for the rest of the series. It introduces concepts such as political discord between the real and simulated worlds, the strife within Arcadian society, and dysfunctional family dynamics that bridge both sides of the simulated and real worlds.
- I enjoy that this story forces you to reconsider what is ‘real’. Interactions between the simulated and the living show you that ‘real’ is a relative term and that no matter where humankind ends up its flaws run deep.
- I like the colour palette Pfeiffer uses for the comic. He chooses his colours to match the context of the panels. By focusing less on realistic colours and choosing a pallete that fits the tone of the scene he creates deeper connections to the characters and adds drama to the scenes.
- The muted colour palette highlighted with small splashes of colour is blended artfully into both worlds. The use of similar colours reinforces the idea that the two different realms are more similar than their inhabitants would like to admit.
- The scene in Arcadia where Pfeiffer uses vivid greens, yellows, and purples really draws the eye in and forces you to stop and look at the splendor of the world he’s created.
- Pfeiffer has good technical drawing skills; he knows how to use vanishing points and leading lines to draw you into his scenes. It gives the landscapes and architecture presence and perspective and a sense of grandeur.
- There is great use of panels in this issue. Graphic layers are broken up with horizontal and vertical panels, and the scenes move from complex works that captivate the senses to scenes of simplicity.
- There is a lot of information to absorb in a first issue, it sets up a grand start to this series but forces the reader to retain a large amount of data in a small amount of time.
- I found myself caught up on the construction and shape of faces at times, usually in ¾ views. I find it hard to fully connect with characters if there are any anatomical issues.
- The story is solid once you absorb all the information. With so much happening the authors need to take care that the story doesn’t become too convoluted and bog down.
- This issue was a very good starting place for an interesting Sci-Fi story. Although it throws a lot of information at you in the beginning, it’s building up to a grand story.
- I hope that the creators of Arcadia can weave all the interconnecting stories together into a cohesive saga. If they succeed this will be an absolutely captivating story.
A complex and thoughtful reading experience that is building up to a grand story.
Forces the reader to retain a large amount of data in a small amount of time.