This Land #1

Mark Abnett’s newest release is trucking through it’s targets over on Kickstarter and I managed to get my hands on a copy for an early look at the first of the five-part release.

Set in a futuristic New Zealand we see a world charred by the fallout from a terrorist attack that left the Moon in ruins and while technology has disappeared in among the ashes there’s a long forgotten energy that’s seeped into the survivors.  A God-like aura has altered those that remain to give them superhero-like powers and when the old-guard comes back they’re less than impressed with what they find.

At the heart of those survivors is Hell’Na who has worked her way into the centre of a quest/war where she needs some serious help to get a team together and bring some order into the chaos.  The weight of an ancient history, the energy of newly found powers and the tussle of a God-vs-God face-off are a slick melting pot for this world to bubble away in and with Mark & the creative team moulding the wold into a reality that feels like it’s representing more than a 5-part panelled story.

While this first issue has been released before, Mark has revisited it and streamlined the story to pack as much of a punch that it possibly can.  That’s a multi-layered process with the different elements that he has introduced and with P.R. Dedelis on art there’s a smart level of detail injected into what quickly becomes an impressive looking world.  That’s all given an extra sense of life with Liezl Buenaventura’s colours and the creative team have a finely polished core with Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou keeping the lettering in hand for some of the lengthier sections of narration/dialogue.

The core creative team are just as well pieced together as the story itself and with the wider support of Verona-Meiana Putaranui, Hekiera Mareroa, Seb Wikarka Peni & Trent Brown-Marsh giving proceedings that much-needed level of authenticity, it’s clear that Mark has real purpose in the series as a whole.  In the end, this rebooted first issue achieves everything it was aiming for – it ups the ante from the very beginning to give a story with purpose and with the extra attention to detail that’s been put into researching & slotting the world together, it’s got the weight of something bigger than comics behind it.  It’s links to history, ancestry, the Maori language and it’s cultures instills more than the age old tale of good vs evil and goes beyond that to weave a world of real, unreal and endless possibilities.

Check-in on this and Mark’s other titles over on the Aroha Comics website and keep up to date with all his news on the Facebook, Twitter & Instagram pages.

You can (and should) get hold of the first issue on the campaign link below too:

This Land #1 Kickstarter

8/10

G-Man

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