REVIEW: Empty Zone #7 Industrial Smile

FIRST IMPRESSION: If you have been reading Empty Zone, this issue continues on the roller coaster of insanity I am sure you have come to expect. However, if this is your first glimpse into this dark world Jason Shawn Alexander has created, you’re in for one hell of a ride. Once you realize bionic arms, zombies, ghosts, goat headed people, and other monstrosities are just another Tuesday in this dystopian future, you can get your bearings and enjoy this mature sci-fi thriller.

“You taste so good” is the expression to get this story started. The opening image is a full-page orgy, with an ominous man and more women than it seems could be utilized. While the series coloring is generally fairly bleak colors fitting such a world, this image is completely red, evoking feelings of passion, strength, and desire. As scandalous as this scene may be, the next page is somehow even more shocking, but I won’t ruin that moment for you.

Corrine, an ex-soldier with a bionic arm turned black market spy who can see ghosts, and her capable companion Hank, are now in Berlin under false identities. On their mission they stumble across a mystery that is more than they can handle, and bloody violence ensues. Now they must seek help and information from an unlikely source. It’s worth mentioning that while this is for mature readers due to graphic violence, sexuality and language, the mature content is not the point of the story or theme. It is very much a suspenseful, supernatural, sci-fi story that simply contains some adult content.

“I created the idea for this series 20 years ago. I’m finally bringing it to fruition, through Image Comics, and I’m putting everything I have into it,” said Jason Shawn Alexander, creator, writer, and artist. “I wanted to create a sci-fi series that veers off into ghosts and the supernatural and becomes something completely different.” It is clearly evident his very soul is in this project.

The art definitely complements the story well. The images give you a feeling of unease and paranoia, really playing with your mind and bringing you into this dark future. It also generally is extremely gritty and raw but finely detailed at times when needed.

FINAL THOUGHTS: The story and the art have piqued my interest for sure. This is definitely going on my pull list from now on. I even want to go get the first volume of the collected edition recently released. I highly recommend this book to anyone that handle can some adult content.

Story By: Jason Shawn Alexander
Story By: Darragh Savage
Art By: Jason Shawn Alexander
Art By: Luis Nct
Cover By: Jason Shawn Alexander

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