Advance Review: Finding Yourself In `John Carpenter’s Tales of Science Fiction – Interference Pattern’ TPB
by Tom Smithyman
Successfully blending elements of horror and science fiction, this trade paperback deals with an astronaut who meets different versions of himself after a space flight. It’s a thought-provoking story that is well written and drawn.
They say that if you travel far enough, you’ll eventually meet yourself. For David Peeler, that is truer than he could possibly imagine.
After the first manned faster-than-light flight results in a very dead astronaut, pilot and astrophysicist Peeler is pressed into service to try a different kind of space travel. Instead of traveling great distances across the solar system, he figures out how to warp to alternative universes. But as he eventually finds out, meeting alternative versions of yourself is not all it’s cracked up to be.
That struggle with different versions of himself the central conflict in the series John Carpenter’s Tales of Science Fiction – Interference Pattern, which has been collected into a trade paperback. When Peeler encounters the first variant of himself, he’s intrigued. But his doppelganger is petrified and desperate – and willing to do whatever it takes to get back home. The results are not pretty for anyone involved.
Dennis Calero pulls double duty as both writer and artist and is effective at both tasks. As a writer, he has clearly done his homework when it comes to theoretical physics – or at the very least, he’s good enough to fool the discerning reader. He mixes the technical with the emotional. What would you do if you met a new version of yourself? How would that change your worldview? How would it make you rethink who you are?
He also succeeds from an artistic perspective, creating dark visuals to match the dark subject matter. This is, after all, as much a horror story as it is science fiction. For every gorgeous new planet Calero draws, there is an equally disturbing version of Peeler who behaves in unpredictable ways.
In an introduction to his story, Calero describes how he was trying to disturb readers as well as scare them. He’s half successful in that respect. While it’s not scary, Interference Pattern gives you plenty to think about.
John Carpenter’s Tales of Science Fiction – Interference Pattern TPB will be available for purchase on Wednesday.