Fallen World Issue 1 of 5 Review: Outstanding

New Japan was a thriving city above the earth, until it wasn’t. In 4001 Rai found out the truth about Father and his purpose. Instead of being its protector, Rai represented Father’s tyranny. As a result New Japan fell and with it tore apart the safety and security of Rai knowing who he is. Now that his world has dropped out of its orbit what’s going to happen next? For Bloodshot who’s on earth in 4002 he’s attempting to cope with the repercussions of people who have no idea as to how to survive in a world roaming with techno-dinosaurs, little technology, and zero survival skills. The nanites in his blood make him a telepath who can hear the pleas of every new edition to the planet. It’s a lot for this android to take. His artificial intelligence doesn’t keep Bloodshot from being empathic nor gives him warning from a malevolent being who may be the worst sort of danger for this new world.

The year after New Japan has become a ‘Fallen World,’ writer Dan Abnett and artist Adam Pollina have reinvented established characters such as Bloodshot, the Eternal Warrior and Rai to create a story that is far-flung in the future, yet relevant to what’s happening today. What happens when your life that was once safe becomes a vast wasteland of terror? Through this comic-book from ‘Valiant’ Abnett weaves his non-linear story by showing us the fall, the impact of New Japan’s society failing and flashing back to 2049. Rai has to deal with the humans who had a good life on New Japan by oppressing and abusing the artificial intelligence who supported their lifestyle. Then there’s the freed AI who see Rai as their savior, who has allowed them to control their own lives. This year is tenuous and one wonders how 4002 connects to 2049 besides the ordeal of New Japan.

Rai’s birth is complicated. Being a combination of the supreme AI father and a human mother, Rai is both, but isn’t truly accepted by either. Except for Lula who was there at the defeat of Father and knows the humans’ existence on New Japan was based on a lie, Rai is alone. What’s more the earth is crying or rather falling apart itself. For the geomancer in 2049 and Gilad, the protector of the geomancer the repercussions of people, and technological waste falling from the sky doesn’t bode well for the planet. Yet, it gives Abnett and more specifically Pollina and his team a showcase at world-building. These characters aren’t just dropped in a new story. They’ve brought their own insecurities, prejudices and complicated histories to an unfamiliar space.

This miniseries needs to be longer than five issues. It’s difficult to imagine saying goodbye to these complex characters in such a short time. The artwork is fantastic. Rai has never been drawn better, The Eternal Warrior resembles his moniker and Bloodshot is shown as even more the tragic figure than his convoluted history suggests. Though it’s a seemingly post-apocalyptic landscape, the backdrops and settings are added elements to amazing storytelling. This truly is a gem for longtime fans of Rai. Finally readers get to understand his struggles. Simply outstanding stuff.   

About Donna-Lyn Washington 634 Articles
Donna-lyn Washington has a M.A. in English from Brooklyn College. She is currently teaching at Kingsborough Community College where her love of comics and pop culture play key parts in helping her students move forward in their academic careers. As a senior writer for ReviewFix she has been able to explore a variety of worlds through comics, film and television and has met some interesting writers and artists along the way. Donna-lyn does a weekly podcast reviewing indie comics and has also contributed entries to the 'Encyclopedia of Black Comics,’ the academic anthology ‘Critical Insights: Frank Yerby’ and is the editor for the upcoming book, ‘Conversations With: John Jennings.’

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