by Matt Kindt, Scott Kolins and Bill Crabtree
Well… that was something else. Matt Kindt is not known for straight forward, easily digested stories and Past Aways certainly doesn’t change that trend. His work with Valiant has been arguably some of his best work in his entire career; he’s an architect of that universe and long may he reign with his cohorts over there. This new, creator owned book, however, is something that takes any craziness there and turns it up well past eleven.
It’s hard to even begin to discuss Past Aways because it’s quite possibly one of the most original things that has been released in years. Sure, it takes some of the ideas that have been long established in sci-fi about time travel and how it may or may not effect the future when you dabble in the past–the butterfly effect, as it were; kill something in the past and it may greatly alter the future–and it builds on it like if you’re from the future, you can’t be killed. It’s a quick, but extremely interesting first issue with lots of crazy technology and over the top Kindt-esque details. There’s even a shout out to his Jeff Lemire’s Trillium series in there.
Art wise, this might be some of the best work that Scott Kolins has done, along with colorist Bill Crabtree. The designs of the characters and their suits are absolutely stellar, not to mention the look of the small, projectile acid-farting lizard beast that was hilariously cool and completely unexpected, especially the way they chose to… contain the situation. Anyway, acid asses aside, the technology from the far, far future all looks fantastic and extremely well thought out–certainly with hints and ideas from the always crazy Matt Kindt, one would assume–and nothing appears to be so far fetched that you couldn’t see our current tech, eventually, reaching points very similar to this. Eventually, anyway. Crabtree’s colors, to properly cherry top this insane ice cream, are superb and excellently chosen. Just having the red and yellow on their suits, amongst all that black, adds that little pop to the page that maybe other comics might not have tried. Considering everything is generally dark and gloomy, it’s nice to see a brighter color palette.
Past Aways was surprising, to say the least. Kindt’s books are like one giant box of chocolate, but more often than not you’re going to get something that is not only “out there” but something that is also meticulously thought out, designed and executed. Kindt is undoubtedly at the top of his game right now and there might not be another writer out there firing on all cylinders like he is (maybe Joshua Williamson). On top of his wizardly, bearded genius you have a fantastic art team that all combine for an excellent debut issue. If you’re tired of the same old, same old, pick up Past Aways. What’s the worst that could happen?