When I went to the comic store the other day to pick up my cache, this one was in my folder. I confess that I hesitated for a minute. A new X-Files arc? The last one I found disappointing, so I was not sure I wanted to bother with it. But being the X-phile that I am, I figured I would give it a read. If nothing else, it would give me something to complain about. But I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised and encouraged by this first installment.
The story is about an active shooter incident in a mall where each of the shooters claims to see holes in the sky. There is a lot of stuff happening behind the scenes that is not made clear but implies that there is some sort of experiment taking place. Think “Jacob’s Ladder.”
What I liked the most about this issue is that it works as a stand-alone story, but also ties in with the larger X-Files conspiracies, so you can approach it from different levels depending upon your knowledge of the background. And it seemed well thought-out, the writing was solid, and the artwork was good. Honestly, I couldn’t find a flaw in this, which was encouraging. My interest is definitely piqued and I will certainly continue reading the subsequent issues. I get the feeling that the creative team has gotten their groove back and have some fresh ideas they are ready to explore.
So this is the second half of the story that began with issue 19 (click here for my review of that one). My expectations were pretty low based on how weak the previous issue was, but I have to say that this did not even meet my lowered expectations; in fact, it pretty much sucked. In the previous issue, people were using a genetically modified type of marijuana called G-23 that has a “Jacob’s Ladder” effect. In this issue, it is asserted that the marijuana is laced with alien DNA. I have to say that it was about the dumbest story imaginable. It belongs in a Cheech and Chong comic, or the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers. Bottom line, unless you just want to fill the space in your comic collection, don’t waste your money on this. It’s not often that I consider something I read to be so dismal that I cannot find anything redeeming about it, but this is one of those times.
You have been duly warned.
I have to say that I found this issue to be only mildly entertaining. The story is based around a conspiracy that the government was growing some genetically modified marijuana called G-23 that has a “Jacob’s Ladder” effect on individuals. Of course, some enterprising freaks manage to acquire this and have a rave with some consequences. Honestly, the story felt hackneyed to me, like I’ve heard it a hundred times before, all told in much more engaging versions. Also, I wasn’t crazy about the artwork, especially the renderings of the Lone Gunmen. I have to say, upon finishing it, I felt slightly annoyed that the story is to be continued in the next issue.
It seems like the writers were trying to appeal to the stoner crowd, and frankly, the stoner genre just does not appeal to me. If I wanted to read that type of comic, I’d go and read the Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers. At least they were somewhat funny.
I realize this is kind of a harsh review and usually I try to find something positive to say about the things I read, but I am finding it hard to do that this morning. I think it’s the fact that the last several issues in the Season 10 series have been so good, that the contrast here just makes issue #19 seem that much worse. Anyway, issue #20 will be titled “Tripped” so my expectations are already low. I guess the good thing is I probably won’t be disappointed.
Thanks for stopping by, and read on!