Writer, Artist, and Publisher: Jason Shawn Alexander
Distributor: Image Comics
Release date: 06/17/2015
The first issue of Empty Zone immediately sucked me in. Once I saw the artwork I was hooked. The cover alone is amazing with an almost accented neutral palette and tense yet fluid composition. There is not much character of storyline development in the first issue. Much has to be inferred by the reader. At times, I was unsure of who was saying what or what was even happening. It is an intense issue with a lot being thrown at you, but at the same time, there is not much at all in ways of storyline. This cyberpunk story follows a woman with a mechanical arm who is some form of hired gun with a troubling past. Overall, the storyline left me feeling as if I had picked up the 3rd or 4th issue instead of the first one.
The artwork is truly the redeeming factor. It adds to the story what the words could not. The atmosphere and emotions of the story are depicted tremendously well. The world of Empty Zone is hazy and hallucinogenic, almost as if it is drawn from her own perspective. The background is rather blurred and hazy, creating a drugged stupor like setting. The dream sequence is perhaps artistically my favorite. The monochromatic palette accented with red is intense. The images are soft, almost ethereal, and full of sensuality. Red started as the color of passion and quickly mutated to the color of bloodshed. The images outside of the dream are ever so slightly sharper and a bit less monochromatic. I am hoping for more storyline in the next issue. Regardless, I will pick it up for the artwork alone.