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Black Science Vol. 1: How To Fall Forever TP
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A Must Read
August 12th, 2020
This review contains spoilers. Proceed at your own risk.

I purchased Black Science (vol. 1 - 5) as part of an Image Comics digital bundle from HumbleBundle. I hadn’t heard of the comic beforehand, and that’s part of what makes me love these bundles, finding awesome new-to-me comics I would have never read otherwise.

Vol. 1: How to Fall Forever, collects Black Science #1-6, giving us the beginning to the story of Grant McKay, an anarchist scientist, who has found a way to travel through various universes using ‘black science’ as a means to gather unlimited amounts of resources and technology to save mankind, or.. at least that’s what he tells himself in the first story. The only problem is that Grant and his team are now lost, trapped going through universe after universe trying to find a way home.

From here on out the spoilers begin. You have been warned.
This is not just a review, but a synopsis of each of the six comics that make up Vol. 1.
Individual ratings are left after the review/synopsis for that issue.


Two things I find repeatedly in reviews regarding this comic series are the words “fast paced” and “cinematic,” which are perfect word bites for this comic. Right from the start, we’re thrown into an alien world, beautifully illustrated by Matteo Scalera and Dean White, as our lead character, Grant, tries to make his way back to his team. We see Grant being chased by humanoid fish people, fighting with bioelectric frog humanoids, and rescuing a slave dancer fish woman - who has breast like a human female and wears a thong while dancing for her frog captors, because sure why not - before he finally gets back. At the same time, we’re also reading the things going through his mind as all of this is going on. Giving us a little bit of a back story without taking away from the current story. I’d assume from this that as we go on we’ll probably learn why and how others joined his team, and why Grant decided it’d be a good idea to take his children along.

Remender is known for being an excellent storyteller, and while this issue gave the story a good beginning, it was the art that kept me flipping the pages and then starting over again to give them another look over. I may look in to getting the floppies of this comic, assuming my LCBS has them, for the art alone.

Black Science #1
Rating: 4/5

In #1, the team tries to jump home, only to find themselves in a different universe and in the middle of what looks like a war zone on the last two-page spread. At the beginning of #2, the team quickly comes to the realization that they cannot control where they’re sent or, due to sabotage (DUN DUN DUUUUN), when they jump. Since Kadir (the man who funded the little project) and Chandra (his butt buddy) are depicted as the people we’re not supposed to like, they’re also the main ones people are going to suspect right off. Personally, I wonder if it was actually Rebecca. While the team is also arguing about who may of committed the act of treason again stthe team, who their leader should be, and probably also whose is bigger, a solider jumps in the middle of it, stabbing Grant. Who of course can’t die because he’s the lead, taking away from the dramatics of it a bit.

On the way to find help for Grant, the team comes across Indians in some pretty cool tech suits, too bad they’re trying to kill everyone. However, if this story is anything like our own history… well you can’t blame them. Aaaand that’s the end of #2, which was still beautifully illustrated, but not as fun as the first one. It at least made me interested in learning more about the Tech Indians, as I’m calling them, but I don’t think it would have interested me enough to grab #3 had I been buying them separately. I did think from #1 that each issue would jump us to another universe, I’m kind of glad that doesn’t seem to be the case so we can learn more about some of the universes.

Black Science #2
Rating: 3/5

Right in to the third issue, something is revealed that I’m going to try to keep to myself and let you read on your own. Spoilers have never bothered me personally, but I think some readers would prefer finding out about this on their own read-through.

So let’s move right along to them taking Grant to the Tech Indian’s medicine man, who is shown healing an unhealable wound. Like I said, Grant can’t die (thought since I keep asserting this as fact it will be a tad amusing/shocking if he does). The only problem is the team’s idea of kidnapping the Shaman doesn’t exactly go to plan and a huge mech suit comes at them. The ensuing battle is an explosive one and is yet again another place where the artwork shines.

While some of the team is dealing with the mecha, the others are watching over Grant and a captive German, leading to one of the team members having to kill in order to keep everyone else safe. The emotion on their face afterwards shows what everything is doing to them as they think back to before going on this little expedition. During this brief flashback (there have been a few throughout the three issues) we learn that Grant never meant to take his kids along, or for anyone to go for that matter. No one in the room seems aware that the machine (which is called The Pillar) was set to bring them anywhere. Instead, it seems people were just going about their normal work in the room and Grant was showing off to his kids when they were all taken into the ‘eververse,’ which is a word I can’t help but hate for some reason.

So now, we have two mysteries, who sabotaged the Pillar and who set it off in the first place (which I think was Kadir). Hopefully, these are explained by Vol. 5 since I don’t have any issues past that.

Black Science #3
Rating: 4/5

In Issue #1, we saw the death of a character early on. I didn't mention it then because we knew very little about them aside from their name so it wasn’t really that big of a deal. In this issue, we lose another member of team. I won’t say who it is, but they fought to the end while the person who should have helped them cowardly ran away. Unfortunately, them running was no surprise.

As this character dies, the other gets away and makes it back to the team just as the Pillar sends them to another universe. We learn after the fact that the Shaman decided to help Grant while everything was going on because his kids, Pia and Nathan, were so upset.

The new universe seems nice enough, it’s much more like our earth with homes, showers, and beds we see the team finally getting to use. After all the things they’ve been through they definitely earned a little rest, but shouldn’t get too comfortable either. Anyone who has ever watched a movie or read a book/comic knows better than that.

We get a few pages of characters talking, nothing all that great and then BAM! a new character. They look like your typical bounty hunter, and are instructed to “get them back,” so may not necessarily be a villainous character. My first curiosity is if it could be the character we assumed died in the beginning, but I don’t think that’s the case as it would then take time travel and this comic doesn’t seem to use that.

Black Science #4
Rating: 4/5

I want to learn more about the new character, but instead we’re stuck with reading the backstory of Kadir and Grant the first few pages of #3. It was bound to come up so at least we’re getting it out of the way. So far, Kadir is the most one-dimensional character of them all, and I doubt anything they do will stray from exactly what we expect of them.

But after some backstory, a flashback, and a little family chat, I finally get to see more about the new character. They’re supposed to be trying to get the others back, but instead of just showing up and saying “hey, I’m here to help” they use a taser on one of the characters and scare the crap out of the kids. So I’m thinking to myself, okay.. maybe they’re not such a good guy, or at least not such a smart one, and then as I scroll my little digital reader I see the reveal of who it is and am pleasantly surprised by the fact that I did not see this coming. And I’m not going to ruin that reveal for you lot either.

So, character-who-shall-not-be-named kidnaps the kids and Grant is chasing them through this place full of humans and aliens on some interesting critters, without going in to anything that would spoil too much, Grant catches up and talks with the character who tells him all his jumping around from universe to universe has the potential to destroy reality. If Grant had just picked up some DC comics he’d know how bad messing with different universes was. Just look out all the mess Flash had Death Metal has caused. But I digress.

They wrap it up with Grant and the kidlets getting back just in time for the next jump, and a beautiful punch in the face to Kadir as learn that (yes, bigish spoiler) he sabotaged the pillar, BUT WAIT he blames Rebecca.. so maybe I was right. Who knows, but hopefully we’ll find out in the next issue, which I’m calling Planet of the Apes thanks to the little universe preview we get at the end of this issue.

Black Science #5
Rating: 4/5

We’ve made it to issue six, and if you’re still reading this stop(!) and go get the comics (or TPB/HC) instead! There is so much going on in this issue and a lot of it I want to tiptoe around so you have extra reasons to read it. I read through most of the TPB fairly quickly as it is a fast paced story, but I barely came up for breath on this one.

I will be the bigger person here and I admit I was wrong in my assessment of Kadir, not in all of it though, he does still suck, but I was wrong in saying his character would never surprise me because while reading through his thoughts in this issue, he did just that.

So much happens in this issue, so I’m going to wrap this up with a bow while still not giving you all of it. We have a crushed team member, another team member beaten pretty well by a monkey, another team member possessed by the soul of whatever is in the monkeys, two members fighting, one with a gun trying to put an end to all the arguments, a save from the Shaman (who I didn’t even realize was still with the team), and someone who misses the jump.

There was nothing about this issue I didn't like.

Black Science #6
Rating: 5/5


I've never been one to care about spoilers, to me they just give me another reason to want to read a story, but I hope the ones I kept out (and the ones I added) for this review/synopsis/hotmess adds to you wanting to pick it up. This is already such a great story and it's only the start, I cannot wait to read the next TPB. Remender, Scalera, and White are quite the team apparently and have put together an amazing story. I generally try to find at least something to complain about in a story (what can I say, I like to complain) but I couldn't really find anything here to complain about. The story is great, and the artwork pulls you in even more. We're given enough about the characters and the universes without being oversaturated with unneeded information and get enough backstory that everything runs together smoothly. The characters aren't bland nor are they larger than life, and while I don't have a favorite I am looking forward to learning more about each of them. And maybe being surprised by Kadir again... or just enjoying him getting hit. Who knows how that'll go.


Seriously though, do yourself a favor and pick this story up. You won't be disappointed.

Loved It

Discussion

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  • Hermatt
    This entire series is Amazing. 
    Reply  ·  1 month ago
  • MannequinRaces

    I need to finish this series but what I've read is awesome! If you haven't done so yet Tokyo Ghost, Low, and Deadly Class are all really good. 

    Reply  ·  1 month ago
  • One_Shot

    Thanks for the suggestions! The bundle came with Low Vol. 1-2, but not the whole series or the other two. I'll have to look in to those once I'm done reading everything else I got.

    Reply  ·  1 month ago