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‘The Spire #1:’ Advance Comic Book Review

It flows downhill, always.

There’s nothing that excites me more when I begin a new series than a well-built world, one that feels lived in, maybe used a bit.  It’s awesome to step into a believable universe already in progress.  It’s the same thrill as visiting another country, where you have to be on the ball and you have that new excitement in the pit of your belly.  That’s just what I was greeted with when I opened the first page of The Spire.  Simon Spurrier and Jeff Stokely have given us just such a world; we have enough of a beginning to keep us from being incredibly lost, but there’s a sense that we’re coming upon something with history, with passions carried out and laid low long before we stepped into this fascinating place.

In addition to making this crazy place, Spurrier has also filled it with fantastic characters that all have a solid handle on their wits and bludgeon each other with them almost as much as with the weapons they carry.  Spurrier has great fun with the foulmouthed and exquisitely expressive denizens of his caste-bound world, and it’s a whole lot of damn fun.  From his an-tiki talking gangs to the straight-up crass badasses lurking about, he plays with the language of the underdwellers in a wise-assed and thoroughly entertaining way.  The dialogue is a blast and still manages to move the plot along with some great laughs.

Stokely and Andre May breathe life into the stagnant and gritty world that is literally painted for us.  They make a great team, and Stokely has a visceral touch to make this world pulse in a very real way.  There’s a feel of Ah! Real Monsters to the artwork, and it informs us quite well of the feel of this world:  constricted and slightly gooey.

Adding to everything I already dig about this issue, we’re given a protagonist who just rocks every moment she’s on the page.  Captain Sha is a certifiable action star, able to trade blows and barbs in an equally devastating manner.  A sculpted person, she’s among a group who has been genetically modified and stands out from the “natural” folks of the Spire, and it weighs in all aspects of her life, even her relationships.

Fans of Total Recall or TekWar will be instantly engaged in this series, and it promises to bring interesting plot twists along with smartly scripted action and dialogue.  A real treat from BOOM! Studios here, and I’ll be continuing along with its whole journey.

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Erik Cheski, Fanbase Press Contributor



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