The Space Between is a brand-new series from the minds and talents of Hugo- and Eisner-nominated writer Corinna Bechko and artist Danny Luckert about a population of people living in a strict social caste system aboard the Dodona, an interstellar generation ship that is headed for a new home planet. Each issue of this limited event series will focus on a different pair of protagonists as they face the evolving challenges of their generation.
Issue #1 focuses on Revla, a pilot, and Les, a worker of the maintenance class. There’s a stark dichotomy in the environments they come from, with seemingly no contact between the social groups. Revla’s caste lives on the upper levels of the Dodona, able to see the stars as the ship travels across the vast distance between a dead Earth and their final destination, while Les’ lot is essentially barred from ever coming up, serving the community up above by producing the oxygen they breathe and the food they eat.
As the first entry into this new world, it achieves quite a bit: from the exposition about the status quo, setting up the protagonists and how they inspired change in an unjust system, and including commentary on how “casual rules” can become codified into laws, simply because it’s the accepted norm. Corinna Bechko’s writing is purposeful, and she gets all that into a mere twenty-two pages; however, the limited page space makes for a rather rushed second half of the book, where a matter of years fly by in a matter of pages. It’s an exercise in economy and Bechko’s script is effective, but I couldn’t help but want a bit more in showing how Revla and Les’ romance sparked the inevitable march of progress and change.
Danny Luckert’s artwork is a visual treat. The design of the clothing, the environments, the character . . . all of those elements looks great here. There’s a sense of familiarity that communicates tropes to us, but there are also some really nice, original-looking elements in here. I’m quite a fan of the design of the vertical gardens which kinda look like an agricultural version of the Gardens by the Bay in Singapore. There’s also a swoon-worthy panel of a kiss that will make die-hard romantics want to join NASA. The colorwork is also superb, and I especially love the colors used for the galaxy outside the Dodona.
Overall, The Space Between strives to tell us a story about the distances that we travel in order to survive, but it’s also a story about the gaps in ideologies, served by the metaphor of castes and class.
Creative Team: Corinna Bechko (writer), Danny Luckert (artist)
Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Click here to purchase.