Can't Teach an Old Dog new Tricks!
Prophet has been a challenging but intriguing read thus far. With its disordered style and obscure content the series’ goal still remains an absorbing mystery. Readers who have rode the journey this far are more than likely firmly invested in discovering more of this universe and its secrets and with issue 28, we finally seem to be rewarded with some cohesion. Despite this hint of structure, don’t get too comfortable, this is still a tale draped in ambiguity.
The Earth Empire has well and truly risen, as an army of John Prophets scour the universe to do their Empire’s bidding. In issue 25 we saw “Old Man Prophet” also rise from his slumber but with very different motives to his brethren. We learn that this man was no ordinary John Prophet, but was a slave who led a rebellion which overthrew the old empire. Now the Old Man has awoken to continue the fight. Despite this revelation, it is still unclear why the Old Man holds this grudge and how he plans on taking the fight to the Earth Empire.
This issue sees the Old Man and Hiyonhoiagn, his animated tree friend and comrade, take their journey to Callisto, one of Jupiter’s moons, to repair Diehard, a powerful robot to help them fight the Earth Empire. As has been the general consensus of these books, this surface is as desolate and eerie as all that have gone before it. Giannis Milonogiannis continues artistic duties and he uniquely captures wide open planes of land and space which dominate many of the panels. With only faint patches of life, the series continues to show how insignificant and trivial life is in this boundless cosmos and what little governance we have over it.
A special mention must go to Joseph Bergin III whose colours are unlike anything in mainstream comics at the moment. There is a huge range to the palette of colours he uses, from lime greens to pulsing reds and dull greys. His choices completely define the mood of every page and help add that eerie, sci-fi atmosphere to the comic.
Brandon Graham continues to keep his dialogue at a bare minimum with characters only speaking with an objective purpose, devoid of any personal emotion. It gives the book and everything within it an almost sterile and mechanical feel but by no means makes the book rigid. With the help of the atmospheric artwork and almost “National Geographic” like narration to help keep things moving, there is a subtle harmony to the proceedings in Prophet. Despite being exposed to the most bizarre of creatures, everything feels very natural and animalistic. It’s survival of the fittest.
As I said before, things are finally starting to come together in the series which doesn’t make it the greatest jumping on point, but with the first volume of the series released only last week at a very affordable price, it couldn’t be easier to catch up. I have a horrible feeling the title is not getting the quantity of recognition it deserves and with the fickle nature of the comics industry, I hope Brandon Graham is allowed to tell his story in its entirety. I know everyone is excited that Superman is kissing Wonder Woman but it isn’t the first and definitely won’t be the last time they do it. If you want something different, challenging and unpredictable pick up Prophet or we may be kissing another fantastic series goodbye.
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