Image © Jeff Smith.
Some comics creators seem to have only one theme or direction in their work, and if they’re good enough, they can make a career out of variations on that theme. It’s rare to see someone follow one theme for many years, then take off in a completely different direction, but that’s what BONE creator Jeff Smith is doing in RASL. I admire that ability, and I like RASL a lot. Perhaps not quite as much as BONE, but nearly.
RASL is written like a film noir thriller: information is revealed slowly, and often in a way that makes it hard to put the pieces together, all while the main characters are under extreme threats of one kind or another. It includes elements of science fiction, science fact, and wild theories skirting the line between the two. It has interesting characters trapped in lives and relationships they want out of, as well as some who want to change the world, and RASL is at the center of it all. The complication of multiple worlds with similar but slightly different places and people only makes things more complicated, and more interesting. I can’t say I understand all of it, but as with a good film noir, I’m happy to be carried along and it’s a great ride.