July 13, 2013

Titan Books Review: Numbercruncher #1

Numbercruncher_#1_FinalCoverLayout_lowNumbercruncher #1

Publisher: Titan Books
Writer: Si Spurrier
Artist: PJ Holden
Colorist: Jordie Bellaire
Letterer: Simon Bowland
Layout: Simon Parr

Life, love, and death are something we all experience at one point or another, usually in that order, but what happens when someone tries to mess with the equation? Equation being the keyword. Numbercruncher presents a behind the scenes look at what makes life and death work, the in-between, and how woefully unprepared it is for something unexpected. Mathematics, reincarnation, love, and trying to beat the system are at the heart of Numbercruncher. How is it? Let’s find out. Also, enjoy the first four pages provided by Titan Comics.


The first part, of four, of Numbercruncher takes place primarily in the In-Between, home of Karmic Accounting. Turns out there is an afterlife and reincarnation; also, the afterlife is very, very, boring. Its math is all bureaucratic dross working towards making life reach the ultimate goal of perfect complexity, which sounds fascinating until you realize you may be stuck pulling the line to get to that point. Bastard Zane is the unfortunate guy who is stuck pulling that line. Turns out that you can sometimes get out of the whole dying thing with the caveat that you become the person who works for the Divine Calculator, the most boring being in existence. Zane may have an out as a dying genius makes a deal with the Divine Calculator to remain with his lady love. I feel like I’ve given too much away already.


I’ll say that this is a book that has me hooked; I can’t wait for the next issue. I’m excited for the next one and sad at the same time since it’s then halfway over. I love stories that go into the machinations of what makes reality work, and when someone tries to throw a wrench in the works. The characters are all interesting; I do hope to see more women characters since there are already two men and an entity that takes the guise of an old man.


The art is spectacular. The difference between the world of the living and the In-Between is great, and one style doesn’t reduce from another. The use of color is excellent in helping differentiate between the two realms. No two characters look alike, and everything in the In-Between is understandably complex.


If you want a story that is about love and death and trying to live a life worth living, this would be a great series to check out. You can join me in waiting for the next issue, and hope that we get more of this world once this four parter is over. Can’t wait for more of this, and this is a stellar first issue for a wonderfully strange series exploring the boredom of death.


 Alexander Bustos



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