Undertow #1 is a solid first episode of an adventure about ex-Atlanteans exploring the free world with bits of politics, science, and philosophy mixed in. The creators are building a world where sea-based humanoid creatures delve in the world beyond instead of the near-inverse happening in real life. Scenes have a consistent themed palette: the ocean is fittingly bluish-green. There are a few things that stick out:
As long as Undertow’s world contains savage humans and the unknown creature known as “the Amphibian,” Redum’s crew should never go back to Atlantis. Readers will get the point over and over how dull and conformant that place is.
If names are going to go all-out, like Redum (thankfully not Redrum) Anshargal and Ukinnu Alal, there should be some indication that the names have deeper meaning. Saying the names out loud should evoke how their personalities or what type of characters they are. Time will tell whether this Atlantean language holds up to such others like Tolkien’s Elvish or Roddenberry’s Klingon.
When I reading Redum, his voice is that of Peter Cullen. My experience reading this makes Ashargal even more of a tough, noble leader. Surface-farers, roll out!
Undertow #1 is published by Image. Issue written by Steve Orlando, drawn by Artyom Trakhanov, and lettered/designed by Thomas Mauer. 24 story pages for 299 cents.
Thanks to Image Comics for providing a copy for review.
Click each page for larger size. Please don’t hotlink.