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A Review of The Ocean Will Take Us #5
The Ocean Will Take Us #5
Rich Douek words
Carlos Olivares art
Manuel Puppo colors
Dave Sharpe letters
You scared of the water? Ever feel like something might just come from the depths and grab you? Dry off and peep the solicit.
As the launch of Triton Oceanic's Wave Power Plant approaches, the gang finds themselves in a race against time to expose the cult, figure out the company's involvement, defeat the bad guys and maybe, just maaaaybe save the world? Find out what happens in the action-packed finale of THE OCEAN WILL TAKE US!
“The ice caps are melting. Sea levels are rising. If we don’t do something about it, the ocean will take us all!”
It’s been a hot minute or two since I’ve read something that pulled me under like AfterShock’s The Ocean Will Take Us. Those creepy black tentacles quickly wrapped around my ankles and drug my feet out from under me. The salty waters of Alamanzar Bay were eager to consume me. My scream turned to bubbles, and I realized I was completely helpless to the narrative pull.
It got me.
I found it humorous that Rich Douek admitted to being insecure about his character writing in the short essay at the end of this issue. This cast was alive. Learning about them, watching them come together and become friends, was richly captivating. The resilience of youth was rife within these pages: the fearlessness combined with the insecurity, the hopefulness juxtaposed with the clusterfuck. I’ve been these kids. My high school experience was infinitely similar–save for the Lovecraftian black goo. We stood against gods, but they were Christian in nature.
Anyways, I found a bit of universality in each of the main characters. I fell for them one by one, and as each issue progressed, I began to worry for their safety. Even Elizabeth, shockingly, wound up being one of my favorite members of the cast, and when the sinister swim coach had her in his grasp–wait. I said I wouldn’t spoil anything.
I really connected with Brian as well, and when he found his guts and sacrificed his innocence to save his new friends, I was moved like water under the weight of a satellite’s gravitational pull.
The art team made these kids even more astounding. Each character is vibrant and unique. Their clothes, jewelry, and body language are diverse and produce agency on the page. Everyone gets the perfect amount of screen time, and Carlos Olivares gets the facial expressions into the panels magnificently. Their fear, their laughter, even their distrust of the pleasant bay area, shines through perfectly like a really clean window just waiting to fuck up a bird’s day.
Manuel Puppo absolutely kills it with the colors. I’ve never seen a horror comic so bright. It’s beautiful. There are so many wonderful tones, and the deep blacks of the underwater creature clash with the general vibrancy of the scenes. It’s, truly, a fresh look for the genre and one of the many elements making The Ocean Will Take Us extraordinary.
The eyes of readers will be more than happy to sweep these pages.
Lettering excels as well, but when you’ve got Dave Sharpe’s name on the cover, you know you’re in a good place. The dialog is super important to Rich’s narrative, and none of those bubbles ever clutter the page or disrupt the wonderful balance and control every member of this creative team exercises over every element of this comic book.
Does it sound good? Because it’s really fucking good. It’s like an amalgamation of everything wonderful about Stranger Things mixed with the grittiness of The Faculty. There’s a dash of ecological dread thrown in to boot. I quite like how Rich reminds us that we’ve fucked this planet 8 ways from Sunday and, one day soon, there will be a reckoning.
Anyways, what are you waiting for? These 5 issues are way too easy to binge. I came out the other end with a lead-heavy chest recovering from the tautness of the tension. Wear your floaties if you’re scared.
And now for some housekeeping:
Blake’s Buzz Live is going to start an hour late tomorrow night. Why? Well, the ENTIRE creative team from MadCave’s Nottingham will be joining me to talk about the second arc, and they’re spread out all over the planet. 10PM CST. I promise it’ll be worth staying up late. Click here to set a reminder.
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And now a word from our sponsor…
Jonathan Hedrick’s Capable #5 is live on Kickstarter! Click here to check out the campaign. This a fresh take on the coming of age superhero narrative, and I encourage you all to check it out. If you’re worried about missing out on the previous issues, Jonathan’s got you covered. You can easily catch up with both digital and physical back issues. It’s also a Project We Love on Kickstarter, which is totally rad.
I know it’s been a minute, but I appreciate you all sticking with me. I love writing reviews, and I’m trying to find more time to write them. You’ll also get a new podcast episode soon, I promise, and I’ve got some really cool stuff scheduled for future episodes!
As always, thanks for reading, watching and listening.
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