Apollo

Matt Fitch, Chris Baker, and Mike Collins. SelfMadeHero, $24.99 (160p) ISBN 978-1-910593-50-9
Fitch, Baker, and Collins—a trio of Brits—bring an outsider’s POV to a quintessential American tale in this multi-layered graphic dramatization of the Apollo 11 mission that took Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin to the moon and back home again. The narrative opens with a visually dynamic presentation of the Apollo 11 launch at Cape Kennedy and ends with a haunting sequence looking at the Earth from the lunar surface, as the astronauts’ command module slowly recedes from view. All the major events—e.g. “one small step for man”—are represented, but it’s the depictions of smaller moments that set this telling apart. Remarkable scenes include the astronauts doing zero-G push-ups, a cutaway to President Nixon in the White House ranting about how history will blame him if the astronauts die but credit Kennedy if they live, and a truly surreal sequence where command module pilot Michael Collins plays a game of one-on-one basketball on the Sea of Tranquility with a jive-talking hippie who declares “They call me the Spirit of America.” The moon landing is one of the most well-documented events in human history, but it’s reimagined here in a way that makes it feel new again. Lovers of space-race lore will want to pick this up. (June)
Reviewed on: 05/07/2018
Release date: 04/01/2018
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