Writer: Alex Paknadel
Artist: John Le
Letterer: Aditya Bidikar
Sensitivity Reader: Danny Lore
The fourth issue of Giga does something that I do like to see comic books tackling – faith and the consequences of what you believe. Here we have questions about how far, and how brutally that belief causes people to act. The moral lines are very blurred and the good guys are not perhaps as far removed from the bad guys as they’d like to think.
In other words there’s a lot here to make you think.
When last we left Evan he had met Akio once more. Here we get some flashbacks to the time post explosion from the first issue. I really like seeing the background fleshed out in this way as we see how the characters’ pasts led them to the point where they are now. Evan helped Akio escape but he’s not glad to see her back now.
Akio has created a movement and she claims she never meant to create a religion but despite her protests you can see the clear parallels between what she’s created and the Order, the religion she’s trying to bring down. Not to say the established Order isn’t brutal, it is, but Akio is not without inhumanity either.
In the middle is Evan who is perhaps the moral centre. He asks questions, he’s finding his own path but that path is not quite intersecting with Akio’s. She has repaired Laurel but Evan is right to suspect ulterior motives.
The art remains a really strong part of the story. There’s a brutal scene of an innocent man being gunned down which reveals the horror slowly. Seeing him collapse from his wound before he pleads for his life has a real impact. His death will become important later as it serves as a catalyst for the more militaristic dusters to take revenge. It really helps that we have a connection to him, however brief, when there is that later moment.
There’s another great page where we see the duster military command around a table which is just a great visual depiction of their debate. It’s hard to pick out individuals as we see the perspective as if looking from above. It’s a really clever way of showing the debate between the military command and very effective. It underlines that they are perhaps further removed from farmers than they would like to admit.
Those are just single moments I can pick out. Overall the Giga’s remain impressive, so does the contrast between the cities and the land beyond. It feels very much like a full world that’s been created. Yet the vastness of the art with the world building is also complimented by panels of more intimate character moments and angles.
By the end of this issue we know what Akio’s plan is but there’s still some real concern for Evan and Laurel. There’s a lot of different elements moving together. Mason has also chosen a side and attacks are going to come from several different sides.
As I said this book really made me think in the best ways with great art. Not much more I can ask for.