“Science Wins” (Black Science: Volume 2)

Black Science Vol. 2 (Cover)
This is the cover for volume two, featuring Shawn, Nathan, Pia, and Rebecca, along with those pesky cultist reptiles.

Comics time! When I’m not reading the best Marvel has to offer, I love to read some comics that have nothing to do with superheroes at all. I know, it’s crazy, right? Comics without superheroes? Well, it turns out that the medium that’s peppered with speech bubbles is also a great outlet for science fiction. Yay! Sci-fi! I love that! One of the best I’ve encountered is Black Science, from Image Comics. It follows a bunch of scientists on their way across the multiverse, bursting through parallel realities in blind gambles to get home. So far, not much has topped it.

After Grant McKay sacrificed his life to save Kadir’s, the group’s jumps through the eververse have become more and more dangerous. Nathan, Pia, Shawn, and Rebecca are about to be sacrificed by a cult of reptiles, and Kadir is nowhere in sight. Could things get any worse? The answer, evidently, is yes, as the kids get separated from the group, Kadir chooses now of all times to be noble and generally just a decent human being, and Grant is coming back from the dead. Twice.

I didn’t know that the comics medium could deliver science fiction just as good as novels or movies do, until I read Black Science. Originally, I picked up the first volume (issues one through six) from the library (such a great place) and then decided to wait until seven through eleven were collected into volume two before continuing. I thought it would be a bad idea to start collecting the individual issues when the collection was so close to being released. That ended up paying off quite nicely, but it meant I had to wait a little more until reading the latest chapters.

Anyway, this volume is indefinitely better than the first. It continues the story in a way that keeps up the action, and somehow, each issue manages to excite me. In Black Science, no one just sits around for an issue or two. Everyone is always on the run from, or fighting off some sort of strange threat. I’m really enjoying Kadir’s character development, as he has transitioned from a “sleazy shitbag” (in Shawn’s words), to a respectable character who is really trying to atone for his past mistakes.

Leap Before You Look
This is a panel from Issue 6, which was collected in volume one, but I love the moment so much, I couldn’t bear to keep it out of the post.

And I, personally, thought Grant’s return was done very well. From the first couple issues, the theme of multiple “Grants” was evident. One of the shockers in the first volume was that an alternate version of Grant was trying to snatch Nathan and Pia away from them, and he’s back to try again. And that’s only the half of it. Along with all of this, there’s this thing called the Eucalyptus that’s hanging over everyone’s heads. I have no idea what this is, but it was mentioned twice, in two different scenes, so I imagine this is important. Anyway, with the Eucalyptus (and if this dosen’t mean anything, then gosh will my face be red) and the end of issue eleven, I can see Black Science heading in a good direction. Here’s to issue twelve! 9 out of 10.

Surpassing some of the best Marvel has to offer, Black Science has broken it’s way through the roof, and dosen’t seem to be slowing down anytime soon. With an imaginative but believable storyline, exquisite world-building, and characters that are fun to follow, this series is at the top of my radar. As the marvelously evolving Kadir once said: “Science wins.”

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