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‘Eden’ TPB (review)

Written by Matt Arnold
Art by Riccardo Burchielli
Published by ComiXology Originals/
Dark Horse Comics

 

The world is full of concepts that seem great, but once you put pen to paper and start shaping the story, the concept falls apart.

Sometimes it’s execution, other times the idea just was not great to begin with. The problem with Eden, written by Matthew Arnold and art by Riccardo Burchielli, lies mostly in execution.

Not to mention one uncomfortable storytelling choice that this story just has not earned.

A group of prisoners wake up from a deep cryogenic sleep.

In that group are a married couple that claim to be innocent of murdering their child. Ben and Anna Croft had it all. He was a sheriff, and she was a senator.

Traumatized for the loss of their child, locked up and put to sleep to pay for a crime in which they continue to claim their innocence. They have now been woken seemingly hundreds of years later in a jungle.

This situation has them trying to maintain order, survive an environment that is actively trying to kill them, all while learning that the person responsible for their child’s death is in their midst.

Eden proceeds to twist itself up in knots, with twist after twist that defy both taste and sense. Not only was their child not murdered, but he drowned in an accident.

The senator is talked into making her child’s death look like murder because a pool drowning would hurt her political career. Not only does that make no sense (your kid died. Most people would feel a sense of sympathy)

So you fridged a kid as a plot point, and it makes no sense? It must have been for a good cause. You must have been trying to tell a great story? Right? Right?

Well the big reveal is that the senator and her husband are all part of an experiment. An experiment in which convicted criminals are put in a simulation. A simulation in which their rehabilitation is calculated to gauge if they are indeed changed. That big reveal lands with a thud. Like knowing there’s a smell and after a search finally discovering something died under the couch.

I’m not saying there should be boundaries in storytelling, or certain tales should not be told. Any story that involves dead children should be treaded lightly, and not as some clever little twist or plot point.

The initial idea is a story that could be interestingly told. Borrowing from The Prisoner, Lost, and Wayward Pines is clever. Riccardo Burchielli’s art is clear and keeps the story from ever being dull.

I just wish there had been aspects reconsidered before this was published.

 

 

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