Review: Redline Volume 1 by Neal Holman, Clayton McCormack and Kelly Fitzpatrick
by Clayton McCormack, Kelly Fitzpatrick, Neal Holman
Series: Redline #1
Publisher: Oni Press
Publication Date: February 13, 2018
Genres: Graphic Novel, Science Fiction
I received an advance review copy of this book from NetGalley. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
MARS. The near future-ish. For now, mostly a military base, a place where people like Superintendent Denton Coyle get stuck doing the same thing every day. Until a bomb goes off, killing hundreds of humans. The easy explanation is to say the Locals did it--they haven't been so happy with the human population moving in. But Coyle doesn't think it's that simple... especially after he finds a key piece of evidence linking the present events to those of his past. This hilarious and never introspective mystery should either leave you satisfied or feeling like you're about to crap your pants. Ideally, both.
This was an interesting read, and not at all what I was expecting. I think my biggest issue is that I went in expecting more aliens than I got. At heart, it’s a grimdark conspiracy-theory military procedural, with some scifi underpinnings.
That’s not to say I didn’t enjoy what it was – I liked the main characters and really enjoyed the dark humor. I’m pretty sure the humor won’t be for everyone; for example, most of the comic relief in the second chapter is provided by a dismembered penis. There’s a couple of “sleeping with the (female) boss” jokes that I found utterly annoying. On the whole, though, I loved the snappy dialogue and the art style, which fit well with the intense pacing. Everything has a gritty feel to it, and it read more like a contemporary war movie than science fiction. From the first page, you’re dropped right into the story, without any expository backstory. Things are not explained explicitly – it was pretty much a given that after reading a new chapter, I’d go back and reread the previous ones so I could get a better handle on the story.
I’m not sure if there’s going to be more issues in the series, as issue #5 was released back in July, and there’s been no new issues yet. Given how this one ends, though, I’m pretty curious where it’d go from here, though I do feel like I still have a ton of questions.
Overall, while I enjoyed reading it, it’s not quite my taste.