The first thing I looked at was the sparse cast page. There is a little data on two characters and for the rest it just links to their first appearance. It struck me as a good way to throw readers into the comic.
GC is set in a huge (and I mean vast) factory in England. There is a well lit bridge across a deep chasm to a dark forest. Then it starts getting odd.
Weird stuff abound such as extra shadows. In the “school”, there is a room labeled “no spare robot parts room.” By chance, they find an abnadoned part of a library with a secret compartment to a maze with no dead ends. The main character sleeps on Bunk 30, which is not 30th in the room. It’s 30 bunks high and reachable only by ladder.
As a parent I was not liking that at all. Maybe its an English thing or inside joke or something.
There are a lot of things like these. Like a dream that goes on and on, only to get stranger at every turn. Speaking of strange, let’s look at the main character.
It’s a little girl named Antimony, who is weird in a morose, glum way. She grew up in a hospital and her mother died. That’s a good partial explanation for her personality but she strikes me like she acts a lot older than grade school age. It is like she’s trapped in this little girl body, resigned to another decade of aging until she’s grown up. She also knows how to pick locks, speaks several languages and some martial arts. That’s a lot for a ten year old. The other characters have their secrets but lack the depth of mystery that Antimony has.
The story reveals itself slowly, mostly through dialog. There is always something happening but it always get resolved with a conversation. Nothing ever seems to have a final consequence. It also seems like you never know all the details for a given character or event. There is probably something you don’t know that really matters.
The art has a certain style which has good contrast, line and color work. It doesn’t have a lot of extra detail but it does provide a clear visual. One thing; the big eyes of the characters became a little disturbing after reading a sizable portion of the archives. I’m not sure why I got that from GC.
Overall, there’s something about it that’s not quite right for me. I have a solid sense of dissatisfaction with it, although it’s hard to describe what is causing it. Perhaps what I am getting most from it is a subtle but seething hostility. Mix in a little despair and frustration tempered by a quiet resolution.
That’s very strange, isn’t it? As I tried to figure out why, I decided to research things. There’s an interview on Comixtalk in which I found my answer.
The artist is seemingly fond of horror. He read a line of books by Alfred Hitchcock when he was younger and One of his first comics was about Freddy Kreuger and Dracula. What that lends itself to are many elements used or mentioned that I just don’t like. I’m just not a horror fan.
(Remember Dash’s teacher from the Incredibles? He was insanely sure that Dash was tacking his chair? Imagine me ranting away in that same tone of voice:) Please note that there is an element named the same as the lead character Antimony. It is metal deathly toxic (like arsenic) and one of its poisoning symptoms is depression. The alchemical symbol for Antimony looks like an upside down version of the symbol for female, as well. There is more, but I’m pretty convinced that the name of the main character was no accident.
GC is a well done,original work and does not have a predictable story, but it is definitely too dark for me. Rating:
by Tom Siddell
review by Delos Woodruff