As the conclusion to this epic science fiction fantasy blend is on the horizon, Everfrost’s third issue offers up answers while also bringing a number of intriguing new questions to the table. Every page is just full of amazing gorgeous world-building, as everything this team sets out to create is brought to vivid weighted life that leaves you wanting to see far more.
On the one hand, Everfrost #3 is very much a story about a mother trying to right a wrong and deal with those that have defiled her son’s DNA by spreading clones of him across a broken world. At the same time, it’s also a story about how a world/society has crumbled, showcasing many of our real-life nightmares about what will happen to the world eventually, and those that are trying to fight their way to gain even a small space within what remains.
This is what really makes the series beautiful, the delicate perfect dance it does between the small and bigger scale constantly. Even the way the two story threads are described above doesn’t fully do them justice.
Ryan K Lindsay continues to judiciously use every single piece of real estate within these pages, fleshing out this world and characters and continuously moving things forward. Even the quieter moments with characters traveling or sitting around them continue the overall movement of the story and world-building as they continue to offer more that fleshes everything out. This is a world so different from our own, yet so similar in other ways, but it never feels that way fully because there is so much offered up in dialogue and captions that make the reader feel like they know this world like the back of their hand.
Truly this book could and should be one that writers look to if they are trying to learn how to tighten up their writing or how to fully use up whatever page count real estate they might get or want for a certain story.
Also, truly I appreciate and love the recaps that are put into the intro page of this book. This is something that more books should regularly do, as it’s just helpful. There are so many comics these days and a ton of stuff going on in life, fully recalling what happened in one issue out of many from 30 days ago isn’t as easy as it feels like it used to be. Some little recap help is much appreciated, especially when they are also written in a fun way.
Then others can study it for the truly amazing work that Sami Kivelä and Lauren Affe have done to bring this world beautifully and stunningly to visual life. In the last review, there was much praise about the playing around with the format of panels and use of white space, and that continues here. Just like how Lindsay plays with all the space allotted so too do Kivelä and Affe. Rather than take up whole panels for a small but important piece of information that needs to be drawn, it’s dropped into a picture-in-picture style panel which works and looks great while also saving room for more art/panels on each page.
There is a lot to appreciate about Affe’s coloring work, but one that stands out is the coloring for low light/nighttime scenarios. On the train and elsewhere in the issue, the coloring is muted and shadowed more, to accurately showcase how things would look in such a situation. Some would say it’s a small touch, but it’s a pretty big one because it’s not always something that we see in play and it just really adds to the realism and atmosphere overall.
There is just such a beautiful atmosphere in this book where even the dire scenes of devastated landscapes/cities and brutal moments are a beautiful sight to behold. There is a sinister green tone that crops up in the latter half of the issue once the true antagonist makes their presence known and a giant wall screen is made to be 100% terrifyingly menacing.
Continuing the apparent theme of this review, Jim Campbell is another that has mastered maximizing space with his lettering work. There is a lot of exposition and captions in many cases, really hitting home how much information is unloaded here, but it’s all spaced out and flows so well. There are panels where it stands apart to not take away from a big artistic moment, and then others where the captions/dialogue can take up more space because the shot is a more static version compared to the next. Not to leave out the fact that the dialogue for various characters and figures are given slight differences in font or styling to set them apart.
As noted last month this is a series where SFX are not everywhere, they are used artistically to bring emphasis at points. Not only that but they are just as colorful and bold and beautiful as all the rest of the artwork, one of the most brutal SFX having its own bloody red panel to itself which is just fantastic.
It’s hard to believe there is only one issue left of this series.
Everfrost #3 is now on sale in print and digitally from Black Mask Studios.