The Argus is a Crazed Time Travel Story
Greetings fellow Soda drinkers! We here at Soda & Telepaths are coming at you with another review, this time a sci-fi thrillers from indie company Action Lab Comics from their Danger Zone label. I myself have reviewed quite a few times from there so when I was offered to review this title I was intrigued. While not every comic has been a hit with me, they have if nothing else been entertaining.
That said, what are we working with here?
Time Travel Shenanigans.
What's the score!?
The Argus #1
Writer: Mark Bertolini
Artist: Darryl Knickrehm
I’ll be honest here, time travel isn’t really a genre of fiction I enjoy. As I mentioned in the beginning of the article, there is a ton of ways it can get real messy real fast.
Oooh boy. Anyone reading the heading above knows that time travel, even at its best, is a tricky subject to do properly. Often there is an element of unpredictability in the story telling, more often there are things set up that then are lost to the reader. I have a feeling the person scripting this comic knows this, or at least understands this frustration. I only say this as, rather than slow rolling the story….
….we are just in from the word go. “Hey kid, you solved time travel, we are all versions of you from different time periods, and we need your help.” If nothing else it is efficient and I admire that in a story.
There are a couple more beats within the next few pages re-iterating that the Randall Pattons need to get up and go, with our next bit of story progressing coming from this panel here.
So to recap, Randall Patton solves time travel. This creates a future security force where multiple versions of Randall Patton work to keep the time stream secure. However, a version of Randall Patton has gone head first off the deep end and is now traveling through time killing past and/or future versions of himself. I would say that this is very Jet Li’s “The One”, except as of yet there is no benefit to the Randall’s dying.
The only thing that can be gleaned about is it that the cracked Randall is VERY cracked in the head. While the set up is explained repeatedly to make sure the reader understands, we lack an understanding of why he is doing this to himself. Although this is the first issue so I imagine that is something that will be explained in future issues.
We do, however, get a taste as to how cracked the enemy Randall is towards the end of The Argus comic.
Given that his speech as well as his text bubble are formatted differently than the rest of the Randall’s, its pretty much cementing that he is crazy. The fact that him going around killing versions of himself is rupturing the time stream itself should speak for itself, sometimes you just need to see it to appreciate it. The lettering here does a bang up job of that of which I appreciate.
When You are your Own worst enemy
So all and all, that’s a pretty serious mess to be in. Here you are, having solved time travel, but it ends up that a version of yourself goes insane. On top of that, said insane version of you is killing other versions of you with the added headache of messing with the flow of time streams. What is a guy to do in this situation?
….sure, I don’t see how that could possibly go wrong. The individual Randalls of Argus, 100 strong, couldn’t beat their crazed self. So they’ll have the first Randall train to do it for them. Something definitely stinks about this, but we’ll have to wait and see what!
I’ll be honest here, time travel isn’t really a genre of fiction I enjoy. As I mentioned in the beginning of the article, there is a ton of ways it can get real messy real fast. One detail I can point out is, if the Argus is made up of only Randall Pattons from across the time stream, how does killing of them not just cause the others to bleep out of existence?
A detail of the comic that is relevant to this is the numbering. The Randalls assign themselves a number based on when they join, going in reverse order. So the older you are, the lower your number is. Thus, 96 is a “young” Randall. With that said, let’s say he goes and kills number 75. What happens to Randall 74-1? Shouldn’t they all die?
Clearly they do not as Randall 3 is still around, but how is that possible? Does it have something to do with the fracturing of the time streams? Or is there some other chicanery afoot? Hopefully these questions and more are answered in future issues.
If you want to follow along The Argus storyline, consider picking up a copy for yourself from Action Lab Comics, Comixology, or your local comic book store! Thanks for reading along, see you in the next review.