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Giga #1 Review
Giga is set on a futuristic alternative earth where the human race has an entire religion based around gigantic robots, or mechs. It is written by Alex Paknadel, art by John Le, coloring by Rosh and lettering by Aditya Bidikar. It is published by Vault Comics.
About Giga #1
Giga features an alternate future earth in which the human populace has subscribed themselves to an entire religion based on the worship of gargantuan robots, or Mechs, as we knew them in the 80s and 90s. Much of the look and feel of Giga is an homage to the Marvel Comics’ licensed series Shogun Warriors. Who some of you might remember as a short lived anime released in Comic Book format back in 1979. Writer Doug Moench (Moon Knight) and artist Herb Trimpe (Incredible Hulk) manned the short-lived series of 20 issues, which concluded in December 1980.
Issue One primarily focuses around wheel chair bound protagonist Evan, who at the start of the comic book is a fully fledged Novice in The Order of the Red Relay. A science meets religious order who worships the giant Mechs that inhabit this alternate earth. During a classroom inspection of one of the Mechs an explosion goes off killing one of Evan’s friends and wounding several classmates. This leads to Evan leaving the Order, haunted by those images of his dead friend.
The rest of Giga #1 introduces us to an Evan in present day as a tech scavenger searching the countryside for parts he can sell off for food rations. We’re also introduced to Mayra, a friend of sorts who likes to make light of Evan’s condition with several quips of black humour. Not to mention an entire post-apocalyptic landscape which appears to be extremely Classist showing a world where members of the Order get through life rather easily while the rest are left begging for what little scraps are left.
The Giga #1 Story
Giga #1 features a bold and fascinating expansive world that is already rich in lore and characterisation – which begs exploring. Giga, although highly influenced by the Shogun Warriors line of the late 70s, is an extraordinary tale that feels highly original with very little borrowed from its source material. The gargantuan Mechs in this series feel more like background furniture at this point. While the human characters flesh out a breathtaking display of forced harmony between the post-apocalyptic landscape, the gigantic dormant Mechs and the flora that has found room to flourish.
Writer Alex Paknadel has done an inspiring job in the creation of a world where the Mechs have stopped fighting and in doing so postulates to us: what happens next? What now? Where does the human race go from here? Its a content rich narrative that adds credence to the phrase “the more things change, the more they stay the same.” This first issue is a prime example of this. Giga is as rich as it is indulgent, as bold as it is irresistible, and as gripping as it is massive. Alex Paknadel escorts us through a science fiction world building exercise that has all the ingredients you’d look for in a post-apocalyptic epic featuring gargantuan Robots.
Paknadel’s decision to primarily concentrate on the human condition in a world that has gone to shit is a masterful stroke. The robots, although cool to look at, aren’t the primary characters here. It’s the human beings and their navigation of survivalism. Coupled with Alex Paknadel’s understanding of balance and restraint in a Comic Book issue that could’ve been too much, too fast. Here’s the start of an expansive Science Fiction storyline that is worthy of greatness!
Artist John Le and colorist Rosh have done an extraordinary job in creating a life-changing first issue. There’s something to be said when the artist element to a comic book comes to life and breathes life into the words of a comic book script. How would it look with another team? Is this what the writer envisioned when he/she/they first put pen to paper? I couldn’t imagine an art team achieving a more momentous end result.
The art in Giga #1 takes on a life of its own as it fleshes out the atmosphere of a world essentially broken. With the constant reminder of those that broke the world in two (the Mechs) constantly there. Thanks to John Le and Rosh this alternate earth takes meanings in words like “massive,” “epic” and “broken” to a whole new level. A level crowned only by the stunning lettering work of Aditya Bidikar.
Giga #1 Conclusion
Giga #1 is a massive achievement in a world filled with thousands of Issue 1 comic books. Giga does as much for the mostly dead Mech sub-genre as it does for commenting on the religious fanaticism and fascism in the world. It’s the start of a beautiful narrative on classism and the human condition filled with wonderfully unique characters and a stunning landscape that reaches over each page. The biggest crime that Vault Comics have committed here is that we now have to wait for Issue 2.
Giga #1 is available through Vault Comics or your local comic book store.