Ether is one of those books that can instantly catch your brain’s squishy little tendrils and force them to keep focused on page after page. You go to read a few panels, and pretty soon you’re at the end, craving more. Forget drugs, comic books like this are way more addictive.
I had to check back and make sure that I was indeed reading the fourth issue of the serious because it really seemed like the first step into a unique series. Now I’m distraught at the thought of what I’m missing! Ahh! Wait, what was I saying? Oh yeah!
This issue opens up to a woman named Hazel retelling a story of herself as a young child, and what led her to be at the doorstep of the main character of this book, Boone Dias. A man with that name could only be really really good or really really bad, am I right? So Hazel recounts her tale of childhood exploration and curiosity which just could not be contained, which I think all of us can connect with. When you’re a child, you must know everything, even if you don’t equip the tools to be able to handle it.
Even though the Ether is an abundantly fantastic world, Matt Kindt’s writing doesn’t waver, and every word is believable and filled with the same type of otherworldly wonder as this magical place itself. Hazel talks about stories her grandmother used to tell her, and the writing could go hand-in-hand with it; it’s very obviously fantasy, but keeps you hanging onto every word, savoring them while begging to know more.
The artwork is sweet, beautiful, and that certain mythical style that David Rubin does so damn well. It’s warm when it needs to be, and translates danger without being graphic. I adore the character design, and I really cannot express in words how immaculate a job David has done in capturing a world that would be impossible for many other talented artists to capture. The use of detail and keeping the characters rounded and fully fleshed-out is joy at its finest. Quite simply put: the colors just fit. They’re like puzzle pieces that go flawlessly together, and I adore the wide pallet of colors. Nothing is muddy, and even quiet scenes are translated well.
The cover is one for the collection, no doubt about it. After looking up the previous covers, that seems to be a running theme with this series, and I’m beginning to think there isn’t a thing David Rubin can do wrong. Throw a halo on that dude and call it a day.
This book is one of the easiest five stars across the board issues I’ve ever seen, and you can damn near taste the hard work and passion that went into it. Is that weird? Probably…Good. If I’ve learned anything from Ether #4, it’s that being a little strange is something we all need now and then.
Story: 5 Stars
Colors: 5 Stars
Artwork: 5 Stars
Cover: 5 Stars
Writer: Matt Kindt
Artist: David Rubin
Cover Artist: David Rubin
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics