'The End Times of Bram and Ben #1:' Advance Comic Book Review

 

The End Times 1The Rapture has come and millions of good people are whisked away to Heaven, including, in a clerical error, one Bram Carlson, a man whose skills as a roommate alone would probably disqualify him from passing through the pearly gates, not to mention his history of womanizing, theft, and a plethora of other sins. After Heaven realizes their mistake, Bram is sent back to Earth with the knowledge that the end of the world has arrived and he, along with his roommate Ben, intend to make the most of the time they have left.


I love that comics like this can exist. Thank your mystical force of choice for Kickstarter. The End Times is a hilarious commentary on Christianity and life that ordinarily would be deemed too offensive to get published. It's one of those titles not intended for Christians, or really anyone, who can't take a joke. The humor in this book is smart, making good and logical arguments as to why an aspect of Heaven might be different in Bram and Ben's world. This first issue's depiction of a post-Rapture world is fantastic and filled with the kinds of results I fear would actually occur. In a nutshell, that's what this book does that's so great; it takes a realistic and well-designed argument and follows it through to its conclusion with a hint of absurdity added for good measure.

Bram is that guy I would utterly detest but still have fun hanging out with. Ben is his much calmer and straight-laced roommate and friend who tries to serve as Bram's moral conscience while he struggles to wrap his head around the fact that the Rapture has happened and he wasn't “good enough” to be taken. The contrast between Bram and Ben is plenty of fun to watch unfold, as Bram uses the end of times as an excuse to sin as much as he can before it's all over, while Ben looks to repent. The pair's frequent arguments on this topic are vastly entertaining. The rest of the cast is pretty great, too, with their neighbor, Tipul, being one of my favorites. Tipul is the stereotypical guy who has been preparing for an apocalypse for some time now, just in case, and he's ready for anything. His nutty approach and focus on survival provides a nice third point to Bram and Ben's dynamic and a nice representation for all those people out there are who have actually prepared a zombie survival plan or have been stocking canned goods for decades.

The art of Rem Broo looks fantastic. Broo's art has a great, clean style that manages to be comedic looking without ever seeming over the top. Given that the Rapture is one of the more peaceful ideas for an apocalypse, you'd think the book would look dull, with a lot of people standing around discussing religious matters, but this is not the case. The End Times has several great set pieces and some simply brilliant-looking pages with a grand scope. The art also makes a point of switching perspectives and having characters constantly in motion, which ensures that even for those talking points the book never gets dull, to say nothing of the snappy dialogue.

The End Times of Bram and Ben is an apocalypse comedy well worth reading, and I can say it delivered the two best endings I've seen in comics for a while, both with its final panel (never saw it coming!) and its brilliant, back page Jesus' “I Want You” poster.

 

 

Last modified on Tuesday, 01 January 2019 00:12

Kristine Chester, Fanbase Press Senior Contributor

Favorite Comic Book SeriesAtomic Robo
Favorite D&D Class:  Wizard
Favorite Ice Cream Flavor:  Cookies N' Cream

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