Thursday, July 18, 2013
Review: NUMBERCRUNCHER #1
TITAN COMICS – @ComicsTitan
WRITER: Si Spurrier
ART: P.J. Holden
COLORS: Jordie Bellaire
LETTERS: Simon Bowland
28pp, Color, $3.99 U.S., £3.99 U.K. (August 2013)
Numbercruncher is a new four-issue comic book miniseries from writer Si Spurrier (X-Men: Legacy) and artist P.J. Holden (The 86ers). Venerable United Kingdom publishing concern, Titan Publishing Group, Ltd., now has a comic book division, called Titan Comics. Numbercruncher is one of several titles Titan Comics is launching this summer.
Numbercruncher #1 introduces Bastard Zane, Operative #494. In what amounts to a strange afterlife of numbers, data, and accounting, Zane is a bailiff for the Karmic Accountancy, where he pushes paper and occasionally deals with souls that break the rules of the afterlife. The big boss of the afterlife is the Divine Calculator, an elderly white man who maintains the “soulpool,” in which “souls are counted, processed, and – sometimes – questioned.”
Richard Thyne is a brilliant young mathematician who dies young and enters the afterlife. However, Richard wants more time with Jessica Reed, the woman he loves. He makes a deal with the Divine Calculator and Bastard Zane to be reincarnated in his lover’s lifetime, but there is a twist/complication.
Honestly, regarding it concepts, I am not especially interested in Numbercruncher. What does make the book worth reading is Spurrier and Holden’s execution of the progression of the narrative. Numbercruncher has a wicked sense of humor, and the creators are mean-spirited and/or cruel towards their characters. However, they do it with humor and with the best of intentions – for their readers, if not necessarily for their characters. That is what interests me – the humor and the interaction between the characters – and not necessarily this series’ concept of an afterlife.
This early in the series, I’ll say that Numbercruncher looks to show its funny streak. Just how imaginative it is will be seen over the course of the series.