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The Daily Read: 12/19

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There are plenty of alien invasions stories out there – probably too many to count – but there aren’t too many post­-alien invasion stories out there. We only know that if the motley crew of scientists/soldiers/average Joes/Janes beats the alien invasion, they will probably live happily ever after in a vaguely idealistic state.

That’s definitely not the case in White Noise. More than a century after the initial invasion, the world is fractioned into city-states and space colonies and no one is really sure if it’s safe to stop watching the skies. The main character of White Noise is a precocious young man named Wren, a “Deadlander” with the obvious mutation of a long white tail and a strange creature named Winter speaking within his dreams. Pursued at all turns by trained killers and separated from his protector, Lohaun, Wren is suddenly forced to make a journey across the remnants of civilization to reach the mysterious Ashton.

The character designs are exceptionally well-crafted, and in particular the lion-like design of Winter, Wren’s enigmatic dream companion, stands out as one of the best looking aliens I’ve ever seen. There is the slight problem that Wren, a young red-haired teen and Lohaun, a tall sandy-haired woman, look sometimes too much alike in certain scenes, but for the most part, White Noise is a success with its characters. The action sequences, ranging from Wren bounding through the desert to Lohaun engaging a troop of assassins, are both illustrated with great finesse and a surge of adrenaline.

With that said, the story is a bit vague in spots. It takes the better part of the first two chapters to properly explain just what is actually going on. But when all the cryptic hints finally subside, White Noise looks to be a colorful combination of 1950s' monster movies mixed with the dark paranoia of Cold War sci-fi and isolation of a post-apocalypse reaching for another go at Armageddon. Wren is interesting enough, but we definitely need more of a supporting cast to entice the readers at this point.

Overall, White Noise a rare dose of science fiction done right in webcomics. The story is just getting winded up, but the potential for a sprawling epic is made even more finite by White Noise’s perfect pace, launching Wren and the audience headfirst towards destination unknown.

 

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