At their best, comics (and their thicker brethren, graphic novels) combine deep, thoughtful storytelling with real works of art. I’m glad to see that great comics are still being written and drawn (and inked and colored) and that science fiction is really well represented in the comics world.
Tom Barren in All Our Wrong Todays is from an ideal version of our present time. No war, no poverty, jet packs for all, and pretty much every starry-eyed prediction made in the 1950’s has come true. It’s awesome. But then Tom loses the love of his life and in his iffy mental state, does something stupid with a time machine. He screws everything up so badly that his amazing 2016 turns into a crap 2016: that is, our 2016. Now he’s got to fix it. Except that the love of his life is alive in our 2016…
In the dream-like Annihilation, a section of the Californian coast has turned so weird that it’s now called Area X. This happened thirty years ago, and no one on the outside knows why everyone inside Area X died, why there are weird structures inside, or why there’s a border you can’t get through except through one invisible entrance. Is it a slow alien invasion, a mass hallucination, or something else?
Victor Schmud: Total Expert is a fun, mildly bonkers series for young readers (ages 7-10) by Jim Benton, the guy who created the Franny K. Stein series. Victor plows through the world with an unfettered imagination, an unshakeable confidence, and a comes-and-goes hold on reality.
The future is filled with serious girl power, if the best science fiction books of 2017 have anything to say about it.
Interacting with aliens is always tricky, but when you’ve got a whole new world to worry about, things get much more complicated, whether you’re colonizing, invading, or just visiting.
Maybe true utopias are possible, but most science fiction writers suspect that living in perfect peace and harmony will require giving up some vital part of being human. Is it worth it?
We haven’t figured out our morality when it comes to human clones. Should we make them or ban them? Should clones be treated like “normal” humans? How do we raise them? How does one deal with an illegal clone, or does the idea of being an illegal human even make sense?
I think author David Wong has invented “trailerpunk”—intelligent, funny, but low-income and low-achieving people save the world in all his books. In his latest, the near-future Futuristic Violence and Fancy Suits, a young woman with a horrible cat is forced to fend off a deeply psychotic and wildly enhanced billionaire cyborg.
Sure, all kinds of weirdness and wonder may exist within our solar system, but the feeling of actually traveling out among the stars is something special.