The Deep is an all-ages adventure that gets it right with the first issue. This currently formatted six-issue series, which can also be seen as an animated series on Netflix, presents a fun glimpse into the ever-wondrous world of the deep blue sea.
The Nekton family travel the world, via ocean currents, on board a “state-of-the-art submarine capable of diving to incredible depths.” Co-creator and writer Tom Taylor generates a story that grabs a reader’s attention from the very beginning. A fisherman’s urgent docking of his boat during a violent storm might lead you to believe he’s grateful to have made it back in one piece; however, he’s only wanting to unload his haul of fish, so he might ship off immediately to catch more fish. This revelation that fish are just ripe for the taking provides an immediate sense that something’s amiss in the ocean waters.
Transitioning from stormy seas and chaos rolling all around to a picturesque scene of calm waters, beautiful underwater views, the Nekton’s seafaring home is made possible by two distinct characteristics: interesting dialogue and vibrant illustrations. Taylor presents two siblings, somewhat mocking one another, who are trying to determine the long-term gains of training a fish. In a seemingly impossible feat, Taylor shows the younger brother’s determination, while the older sister is still willing to help despite claiming “I want to see you fail.” Simple gestures and communication show the fondness for each other, while images help to capture the surrounding space and our attention.
Co-creator and artist James Brouwer draws The Deep with spectacular blue and green hues, traversing each reader to the same depths of the Nektons. Brouwer also creates streamlined, colorful outfits and dramatic facial expressions that are certain to put a smile on your face. These expressions alone are worth picking up Issue #1, as they transmit a variety of feelings: happiness, frustration, surprise, and an overall sense that this family might need more than just six issues.
Taylor and Bouwer showcase the first comic book with an intense, intriguing opening sequence and a family hoping to find hidden treasures in the world’s greatest depths. The first comic book in this mini-series is easy to read and will pull you to the second issue, which readers should expect to be as equally larger-than-life, entertaining, and full of hope in discovering the great unknowns, including the dangers associated, just like the Nekton family.