Mind The Gap #6

by lucstclair on November 20, 2012

Mind the Gap #6


Writer: Jim McCann

Artist: Rodin Esquejo


Review written by MaxM


A jumping point for new readers who hope to get in on this series before it's too far deep. I'll consider it a jumping on issue but just barely. While the beginning does help in bring any new readers in a creative way, it avoids one of the most important aspects of the book. The Garden is a huge part of the book so far and it's barely mentioned at all in an issue that is supposed to help ease in new readers. Not having much mention of the garden and the journey through her mind brings up a point that this series has been struggling with since issue 1: Balance


Even at just issue 6, they are already weaving a very complex tale. The mystery aspect and also the journey through the garden are strong enough to be standalone stories, and combining them with cohesion is proving to be difficult. One issue a huge focus is on Elle's travels through her mind and only a few pages dedicated to the mystery. This issue is almost completely focused on the characters of the real world and leaves out all of the important players in the garden, which is a shame because that's one of the things you want to show off to try and keep new readers who dove in with this issue. I think in a few issues when there will be more answers then questions, it will start to balance out naturally, but right now it is still a big jarring to read. The dialogue and monologues were hit or miss. There is a wide variety of characters and McCann does manage to give most of them unique voices. With so many though, some of them do feel a little bit flat and 2-D of what you expect from that type of character. Stuck up rich kid feels like stuck up rich kid and no nonsense cop feels like no nonsense cop. For right now, that is alright but if they end up being more important characters down the road they will need to be more than the paper thin archetypes they are based off.


Make no mistake though, the mystery is getting good. Real good. When I first heard of the book and it's description I was expecting the mystery and whodunit to be a little bit more grounded and personal. From what has been revealed so far, with mysterious phone calls, suitcases, and hooded characters, it looks to have more of a connect all of the dots/secret project feel. I don't think I would be as interested if it wasn't for the right hand of the comic book medium: The Art.


I'm a blitz reader and I have been all of my life. When I get a comic, I go straight to the dialogue bubbles and just zip from bubble to bubble. I tell people that "it takes me 5 minutes to read the book, and then 2 hours to write the review." The reason I love this book's art is that it forces me to slow down. Each panel is loaded with clues as to what is coming next or something that can break someone else's alibi. Books like this are what makes the comic medium so much fun. I don't feel like i'm reading glorified story board panels but a story MADE to be a comic book. Slowing down also made me appreciate the amount of detail that goes into the characters faces. It feels like no panel is half assed. I tried to go through and find the same 2 expressions and I really didn't fine any. Esquejo also paid very close attention to detail with everyone's clothes. It always irks me that a lot of comics will just have everyone in the background in a t-shirt and jeans or every non super hero character wears a button up. Just from costume design you can tell Elle's family has money, or that Elle's friends are hip New York urbanites. Two things that wouldn't necessarily break a comic if not done very well, but they show how much they can make the pages stand out when they are so impressive.


Looking back, this is more of a 'big picture' review and not just of the single issue. It's difficult to look at these from a 1 issue perspective knowing how much of the previous issues are being used and what they building to be used in the future. Not everyone is a fan of the slow burn style books that arcs span 10-12 issues, but if you do then this one is a keeper. Mind the Gap has beautiful art and a story that has way more hits than misses. Definitely consider it the next time you are in the shop.



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