In a post-apocalyptic world where the touching of skin results in death, protagonist Paul and goods dealer Maria cross paths. They both get caught up in a little trouble, and are stuck with each other in the hopes to escape the grasp of a serial killer.
This issue is basically setting up the situation and setting in the series. A strange phenomenon has killed most of the people on Earth via human contact. The only people left are doing their best to survive by staying covered up. At the end of this issue, the conflict is set up pretty perfectly when an outsider starts shooting at the protagonist.
For some reason I feel like Paul and Maria are going to end up in somewhat of a romantic relationship. Their start has that cliché beginning to relationships in books and movies: One of them does something bad to the other. The other confronts them. They hit it off. I’d actually love to see this happen. It would be interesting to see how a romantic relationship plays out in a world where physical contact leads to death. Would it last? How would it work? The emotional connection would carry the relationship—how unfortunately beautiful.
Ben Fisher’s writing is smooth, effective, simple, and understandable. The characters interact in a natural and fluid manner. The dialogue is direct and very matter-of-fact, aside from the protagonist’s speech. He likes to beat around the bush and/or trick other characters to his benefit. In a world where you could die at any minute, you don’t have time to lollygag. Paul, on the other hand, lets his personality shine through, despite the dark circumstances.
Artist Adam Markiewicz’s illustrations aren’t all too detailed, so emotion doesn’t show very well. Some characters look nearly the same in more than one panel, and that lack of diversity in expression doesn’t keep us very interested. The line work isn’t too clean (which is a style I actually really like, so it looks okay). The colors are dulled down, so the post-apocalyptic dullness reads really well.
This is a great issue that starts a really unique series. The concept of a virus breaking out isn’t new at all, but spreading through skin contact is fairly fresh, and it’s a great way to add an element of urgency and danger to the situation at hand. This is truly a great read, and I fully recommend it to any and all of you.
Written by: Ben Fisher
Illustrated by: Adam Markiewicz