The Caliban, a mining vessel travels through space, traversing through far off planets and galaxies by warp speed. So far its crew have failed to detect any intelligent life, but on a routine mission their ship crashes into an alien ship, or rather, merges with it. The crew are naturally worried by this mysterious ship and the danger it represents, but that may just be the beginning of their troubles…
This new title by Garth Ennis (Preacher, Crossed) and Facundo Percio (Fashion Beast) first came to my attention via Zainab and her awesome comics blog: Comics & Cola, she was kind enough to send me the first issue and I was thoroughly impressed by it.
Ennis doesn’t hide his love of Ridley Scott’s Alien and it was partly due to the release of Prometheus that he was inspired to write the series: “When I finally saw Prometheus I realised they had gone in a totally different direction” states Ennis in a recent interview for Bloody Disguisting, “and given that I had all these ideas kicking about in my idle head, I thought – Why not?”
Indeed, why not? Because in this opening issue Ennis lays the foundation for a series which is both gripping, not only by his excellent script, which is bleak at times, but Percio’s outstanding artwork which automatically evokes a feeling of claustrophia, dread, and terror. Looking at the design of the alien ship and indeed the ‘Terror’ cover for issue 1, it calls to mind the works of H.P Lovecraft with tentacled horrors and strange symbols. I also felt Ridley Scott’s Prometheus was more in tune with Lovecraft than anything, for instance, is Prometheus but not a futuristic take on Lovecraft’s At The Mountain of Madness? I certainly felt so.
Coming back to the comic, the script and art conjures up a place which is far away from the space of Star Trek or Star Wars: here the Force, or rather God is absent (which might suit Ennis pretty well it must be said!). It also calls to mind Event Horizon, which is perhaps let down by a poor third act but the ideas, and the production designs still remains captivating. And I felt Caliban was a blend of both Alien and (the good parts of) Event Horizon.
Being a huge fan of sci-fi/ horror, Caliban has certainly caught my interest, and going on this first issue I am absolutely enthralled and cannot wait get my hands on the next issue.