This Is Not Your Average Coming-of-Age Story
After the odd sense of repetition between the first two covers, this one's a lot more interesting. There's still a significant clash between the art styles of Humberto Ramos and Nuno Plati. This cover has simple design, but it's actually very well representative of the events of the issue. Nuno Plati's art really starts to work great in this issue, the way Plati draws energy is awesome, and there's a LOT of that in this series. Plus the vibrant colors create a very unique look, and there's a double page spread where Alpha's testing out his new super sense that looks incredible.
Alpha's getting some major emotional developments in this issue as he goes through a veritable roller coaster trial. His feelings about having powers flail wildly, but in a way that makes sense, and feels strangely real. This kid has a complicated life, and it really makes you feel for him.
I was bothered before by the seemingly stereotypical love interest plot that was developing, but Fialkov really shows his skills as he completely deconstructs the hell out of that trope. Alpha's logic is a bit odd when he declares that Soupcan likes him based on the conversation he listens in on, if anything the conversation she had face-to-face with him was greater evidence of some form of potential romantic interest.
Meanwhile there's tragedy on the horizon, as a slew of seemingly random events is beginning to form a cohesive plot in the background. Alpha's been putting out a lot of fires and fighting elemental monsters from nowhere for very important reasons beyond immediate character developments. We begin to see the secrets bubbling up to the surface to craft what will surely be a harrowing finale.
In Conclusion: 4/5
Always grazing up against perfection, but never quite reaching it. The quality of this series is almost a metaphor for the themes underlying in the main character. Alpha's got a complicated life that's really tearing him up emotionally, even at times he doesn't realize it. His emotions are forced to stretch and whiplash wildly, and it's hard to say if he'll come out of this experience a better person or a traumatized future villain. All I know for certain now is that it's a great read.