• Dept. H #7

    Dept. H #7
    Released by: Dark Horse Comics
    Released on: October 19th, 2016.
    Written by: Matt Kindt
    Illustrated by: Matt Kindt, Sharlene Kindt
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    Not caught up? Get caught up. When this issue begins, the crew has split up. Mia’s up at the communications room with Roger, Aaron is running towards Jerome’s lab, Q and Lily are trying to get the pumps fixed, others heading to the sick bay to retrieve Raj while they still can. It’s chaos, and they’re about to lose their emergency power.

    While the others set out to do what they can, Mia finds herself alone with Roger and with a bit if time to kill while they wait on the rest, she asks him about her father’s death. She tells him she feels everyone had a hand in it and that for that reason, none of them are worth saving. She wants to get in the sub and head back to the surface and leave them in the base to drown.

    Roger tries to convince her otherwise. He tells her about Aaron, who was a student of Hari’s, Mia’s father, who Roger himself assisted years ago. Aaron got noticed because he would challenge Hari in class. They would debate the meaning of exploration, of what would happen if extraterrestrial life were found and how it would affect human existence and religion. Aaron was able to get Hari to think differently and by doing that, guided him to explore the oceans instead of the skies.

    Roger explains this as we see Aaron find Jerome and confront him about the cure for the H virus that was noted in his diaries. Jerome brings Aaron to his chambers where he pulls a jellyfish out of a tank and slaps Aaron in the face with it. Aaron and Jerome scuffle, Aaron’s communication link goes dark and Jerome destroys some of the H virus test vaccine. Aaron does what he has to do to stop it all from being destroyed, he knows what this could mean up on the surface.

    Matt Kindt’s story of underwater murder most foul and the sabotage that would seem to plague Mia’s investigation into her father’s demise continues to get weird and wilder. The biggest part of this issue is how Aaron’s backstory is revealed, his connections and ties to Hari and the relationship that they shared, one that Mia really wasn’t all that aware of prior to Roger’s story. We don’t know yet if this will change her mind in regards to Aaron’s involvement in Hari’s death, but Roger makes a good case as to why it should. At the same time, we get some solid tension and suspense from the conflict that arises between Aaron and Jerome in the present. This will definitely have some consequences in the coming issues. Lots of great stuff going on in this issue, and the artwork, with coloring from Sharlene Kindt, is once again absolutely gorgeous. Not only are the human characters wonderfully drawn but the backgrounds show amazing detail and design work. The layouts are quirky and unique but never at the cost of telling the story properly, and the coloring brings the pencils to life perfectly.

    And once again, we get a few interesting sketch pages showing off Kindt’s creative process and an interesting letters column (these won’t be reprinted in the eventual trade editions of Dept H.).

    This continues to be one of the best books on the racks right now. Don’t miss out.