Rain Like Hammers

Brandon Graham. Image, $17.99 trade paper (256p) ISBN 978-1-5343-1355-2
Eisner Award winner Graham (King City) constructs a dazzling science fiction universe with a soft, funky bande dessinée aesthetic. In a future so distant that its technology is akin to magic, the mercenary Brik Brok breaks into an elite citadel to rescue El, a teenage girl forced into a deadly competition to join the aristocracy. As he searches for her, he realizes that he, too, is a pawn in a complex aristocratic game. A frame story follows Eugene, a low-level worker in a vast, ambulatory city who is even further from understanding the society he inhabits: “This city feels like a locked puzzlebox,” he reflects from his capsule apartment. Eventually the two story lines intersect, but the often opaque plot is less successful than the visuals and worldbuilding. Graham’s art suggests Moebius crossed with Chris Ware and a touch of Peter Max’s psychedelia, and his pages spill over with imaginative, sprawling spaces; bizarre characters; and fascinating tech: fingers become keys, people hop bodies, and immortality is a tool for the powerful and cunning. Even when the story wanders, it’s stunning to look at, with big ideas and visual imagination to delight fans of smart science fiction and European-style comics. (Aug.)
Reviewed on : 06/17/2021
Release date: 08/01/2021
Genre: Comics
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