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GRAPHIC NOVEL REVIEW: Invisible Republic, Vol. 1

 
InvisibleRepublic_vol1-1
InvisibleRepublic_vol1-1
InvisibleRepublic_vol1-1

 
Overview
 

Story by: Corinna Bechko & Gabriel Hardman
 
Art by: Gabriel Hardman
 
Colors by: Jordan Boyd
 
Publisher:
 
FG RATING
 
 
 
 
 
4/ 5


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To sum it all up..

NOTHING ESCAPES HISTORY! Gabriel Hardman, Corinna Bechko and Jordan Boyd explore another human possibility of space travel with the political analysis of social decay, and the rise and fall of the populist yet dictatorial regime in the initial volume of the Invisible Republic, released by Image Comics. The book contains issues #1-5, clocking around 130 […]

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Posted August 25, 2015 by

 
FULL REVIEW
 
 

InvisibleRepublic_vol1-1

NOTHING ESCAPES HISTORY!

Gabriel Hardman, Corinna Bechko and Jordan Boyd explore another human possibility of space travel with the political analysis of social decay, and the rise and fall of the populist yet dictatorial regime in the initial volume of the Invisible Republic, released by Image Comics. The book contains issues #1-5, clocking around 130 pages. At first glance, space exploration is the main trajectory of this narrative since humans fully comprehend and execute space travel, colonize and Tierra-forming planets, and form societies and cultures in the possible futuristic scenario. But science-fiction often tackles present issues in the far distant possible humanistic grand narrative future scenario. Main creators Hardman and Bechko select historical parallelisms and dystopia as their instruments of critiquing the existing democratic and ideological excesses and their possible consequences of overthrowing a dictatorial though stable government. The creative team pulls no punches here. Too much power can do corrupt the ablest of persons. Too much democracy (and other political and philosophical ideological mindsets) results to the decline of social order. And, history is the parameter of humanity’s failure failures. Those are the subliminal and innate powers of reading, enjoying, reflecting and digesting Invisible Republic.

Characterizations are balanced and executed decently as the story unravels from one chapter to chapter. For examples, disgraced journalist Croger Babb clearly wants to reclaim his form glory while uncovered the “hidden” history of the fallen leader McBride Mallory in the journal of the latter’s cousin, Maia Reveron, whose the two latter’s profiles are slowly emerging until the volume’s last splash page, that perfectly transitions to the next volume. Even the supporting casts have their respective moments too that provides the story more depth and substance than many so-called science fiction genres offer right now! Furthermore, Maia’s caretakers and Babb’s fellow colleague are worth mentioning for they contribute significantly to the intriguing tale of deception, duplicity, betrayal, surprises, and the revision of public historical knowledge to serve one’s existing/ruling status quo (and who says history is so dreadfully boring after all?) that balance the main characters’ characterizations as well. The pacing is simply well-executed that is moderately timed to the appropriate suspense when the twist demands, the tensions between the characters’ perspectives and/or motivations are clearly defined, and the placements of red herrings are rightfully done on the appropriate setting to make this reading enjoyable and intriguingly fun, if not reflectively challenging.

Hardman’s illustrations are definitely gritty, yet minimalistic at best, suitable to the cynical and pessimist take for he grasps the flow of the story overall with the urgency of having us readers to learn of our mistakes as humans in the graphic illustrations. Emotional portrayals are well-drawn that demand less dialogues at all, forcing readers to analyze further his intricately detailed city backgrounds and the surroundings themselves that serve as the reminders of our own follies of recklessness if done without human awareness at all. Furthermore, Boyd should also be commended for his fusion of digital and traditional colors capture the zeitgeist of the far dystopian society that humans fail to prevent even in the distance future. He applies four color schemes; all are not primary to illustrate the gravity of social decay, government corruption, and the apathetic feeling of many members of the societies whose hopes are strikingly similar to our own. Together, Boyd and Hardman’s artistic collaborative fusion is so seriously potent that gives Invisible Republic that initial gravitas it worth deserves.

If there are things to nitpick here, this volume has the similar trappings of most trade paperbacks from Image Comics—a couple of artistic features, but neither the interesting letters’ section nor the behind-the-scenes coloring scheme processes and the social commentaries that each single issue possessed. And, the usual Waterloo of science fiction is the usage of modern or present language in the far distant future, which obviously has different linguistic structure and existing fundamental grammar rules. However, readers who love sci-fi, cautionary tale of human follies, noir and suspense, and intelligent reading can be assured that Invisible Republic, Vol. 1 is a great additional reading experience.

Invisible Republic, Vol. 1 tackles futuristic and historical parallelisms that combine the elements of the detective and noir and the elements of thriller that only scratches the proverbial iceberg of Mallory’s unseen “republic”.

 


Norby Ela

 
FlipGeeks Operations Editor, Managing Editor of Comics, Komiks, Manga, atbp.


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