‘Cognetic #3:’ Advance Comic Book Review

James Tynion IV and Eryk Donovan end the world for a second time in Cognetic as they did in Memetic. Similar themes permeate both stories, with similar functions. Humans become the tool, figuratively and literally, for the next step in not just human evolution, but more of an intergalactic evolution. It’s frightening to think about for a lot of reasons. We aren’t just here to serve ourselves, but something beyond our understanding and beyond our control. It’s almost code-of-the-Samurai kind of stuff but on an epic level.

As creators, they’ve used science fiction to tap into those everyday feelings we have of impending lack of control. Our lives, our deaths are never truly ours, but we have the ego to believe they are. We strut our stuff, grappling for power over each other, embracing ideologies that make us feel important and then pushing them on others as if it should be just as important, when in the end it will all prove to be our selfish desires to hold each other back from whatever that next step is.

Now, this is the great thing. Tynion and Donovan are using science fiction to get you to think. To use your fear as a means to explore, as opposed to shut down and follow your built-in automated responses to the world around you. And, they’re doing it through perfectly well-drawn characters. Characters that fill in a void of grey; they are above good and evil, moral and amoral. They are beyond the definitions that we have settled on for things to make life more comfortable and less frightening. At least, they are in the end. Nothing is as easy as it starts out in Cognetic, which makes it a do-not-miss on my list. Also check out Memetic.

These stories would be tragic if they weren’t so mindbogglingly open to exploring the unknown.

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