REVIEW: Spring #5

Double Take has developed a 10-title shared universe revolving around Night of the Living Dead, with each revolving around a different story that is in some way connected to the classic zombie movie. This title, Spring, has little to do with the dead rising (although if it did, it would be a pretty funny title considering how they’re all springing up from the grave). Instead, this comic focuses on a lake where many swimmers have mysteriously vanished under the water for reasons not of this world, and it is up to the lifeguard to save them, naturally.

It’s actually much more complicated than I’m making it out to be. You see, the missing swimmers are part of a plan to extract a spaceship from the bottom of the lake. Holli, the lifeguard, was chosen by the all-female aliens of Venus to pilot the craft, but there is the matter of the lost people to consider as well. This comic begins with the Holli’s mother helping extract people from the interactive paradise underwater, but as they pop up to the surface after so long, they are assumed by police to also be zombies. Fortunately they aren’t as trigger happy as I would be, and they are able to recover, for the most part. After rescuing the last person, Holli is able to fly the spacecraft away undetected! Or so it would seem…

For me, this falls in the middle of the pack, as far as quality and content are concerned; while there is nothing particularly detrimental about this comic, there is also nothing exceptional. I would have to read the first four issues to properly appreciate everything included here, but I just didn’t feel the weight of the situation reading this. Sure, missing beach-goers are scary, but the entire alien angle is kept secret so the mass hysteria attributed to the zombie outbreak trumps this by far. The writing is simple, relying mostly on dialogue to move the story rather than employ some greater narrative that may have clarified some of the plot. Also, throughout the comic, speech bubbles are colored according to who’s speaking, which feels unnecessary in most cases. I like the artwork, showcasing both the sixties setting and the sweet technology of the women of Venus. There is nothing to set this artist above the rest in the comics community, but I’ve seen some bad art and this is not bad.

As a stand alone story, this comic has a flow to it, with its dual realities playing across the same pages and plenty of exciting moments, but I feel as though this doesn’t need to be tied into the Living Dead story. I know the point is to have ten unique comics all in one universe, but they’re stretching a bit. The comic itself is decent at best though, and for that, I rate it accordingly.

Okay, 2.5 out of 5 Stars.

(W) Bill Jemas (A) Derlis Santa Cruz (CA) Ruiz Burgos

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