Sex in the Submerged City
The latest book to come out of Image Comics is Low by writer Rick Remender and artist Greg Tocchini. Remender may be known for his work at Marvel Comics, but he is quickly becoming the king of the independent comic over at Image. Remender writes Black Science, Deadly Class, Low, and coming in 2015, his new project with artist Sean Murphy; Tokyo Ghost. So what makes Low stand out from the pack and makes it worth checking out? First and foremost, the cover just grabs you. We see a young girl approaching a suit of armor, however, unlike every suit of armor you have seen in the movies and TV, you can instantly tell that this was not designed to be practical in any way, and was rather designed by an artist instead of an engineer. It is here that we find our answer; this world was created by artists.
The reader is thrown into this world head first, and has to pick up the context of the scene over the coming pages. This technique may work in books where the primary characters are already known, such as Spider-Man or Batman. However, when a new world is being developed the reader can feel very confused about what is going on. Thankfully, the book does not throw anything at the reader too fast and by the end of the book, a full picture of the world is established. One may just need to hold on and enjoy the ride, and not worry so much about character names or places at first. I do have to say that I never felt lost in the world, because it was not the sole responsibility of the writer to develop the world; the art is what pulled you in from the first page, and told you to just relax and let it happen. That’s right, it’s sexy time. (It’s a joke because this book starts with boning, take a look)
Don’t act like you haven’t seen a naked body before …on the internet. You’re still laughing aren't you?… Well it’s good that you see this now, because for the first half of this book, the main characters are naked. Nothing gratuitous or even detailed like comics such as Saga. Some people may be asking why this is necessary in the book, and that’s a fair question. My thoughts are that comic artists are branching out from social norms that exist in entertainment and go places’ that TV and movies really won’t. I think that is what Remender, and Image Comics have been doing over the past few years, so look for that trend to continue.
The reason movies and TV are looking to comics and novels for stories is because, these are the birthplaces of ideas and franchises. A franchise is nothing but a world that is developed around a story or set of characters. That is exactly what Low gives us; an interesting and beautiful world, rich with color that grabs the imagination. As I said earlier, just look at the suit on the cover, and instantly your mind thinks of possible characters and stories. That is great world building and is the primary reason why this book is worth checking out… O, and the naked people!
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