By Jarred A. Luján — Resonant is a new series from Vault Comics, written by David Andry and drawn by Alejandro Aragon. The concept of Resonant is that in the Waves, the story taking place a decade after the first one, all of humanity’s worst impulses are engaged at the same time. Andry’s talked pretty extensively about how inspired by the Call of the Void the story is, so I won’t get too bogged down in that, but the premise alone is a fairly interesting intro to horror.
One of the strongest things about Resonant is how good it is at setting up its characters. Bec will, almost certainly, be the fan favorite early on for many readers. Her father, Paxton, is also easy to sympathize with, while Stef and Ty’s back-and-forth feels stunningly authentic. This is such a good family unit set up, serving up a group that the reader can easily empathize with.
Then, Andry and Aragon do the thing you desperately don’t want them to: they separate them…and that’s what I loved about the story the most. The stakes are here from the start, they’re raised, and the issue makes certain you understand that they’re only going to get higher as the series continues. Resonant #1 is an easy comic to get sucked into, and to quickly become invested.
Art-wise, Aragon really brings so much to the table here. It’s a strange thing to pick up on, but I’m a sucker for sky/Earth contrasting shots. The first issue has plenty, many at some of the more tense moments of the book, and the use of them provides a nice feeling of weight to each moment. Some of the best art in the first issue, however, can be found in the subtleties of the pages, like the motion of backgrounds as the book hits it’s highest paced moments. They have the potential to feel a little jarring, but they’re complimented beautifully by the work of colorist Jason Wordie, who quickly changes shades as moments heat up. This all culminates in a sense with the last few pages of the book really weaponizing the artwork to build to the big moments still to come.
In the end, this issue is busy. There’s a lot of character threads being sewn, a lot of plot beings being laid out, and it’s clear there’s a whole lot more to come. Therein lies its great strength, though: in a horror book written ten years after some “big” event, Andry doesn’t let the plot get hung up on world-building or lore. The book zooms in on its characters and hits the gas on those instead, with a big threat already looming above them.
Overall: Resonant weaponizes it’s early and effective character work to build something frightening heading for its audience, and none of us have chirper boxes to prepare us. 8.8/10.
Writer: David Andry
Artist: Alejandro Aragon
Colorist: Jason Wordie
Letterer: Deron Bennett
Publisher: Vault Comics
Release Date: July 17, 2019
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Jarred A. Luján makes comics, studies existential philosophy, and listens to hip-hop too loudly. For bad jokes and dog pictures, you can follow him on Twitter.