Eden (1994) by Vince
Well, what’s immediately striking about this is that this looks like Maximum Heavy Metal. Or more precisely, like somebody trying to rip off Ranxerox. I mean, somebody very inspired by Liberatore.
The rendering is very slick, and immediately kinda exciting, right?
But Liberatore isn’t just slick, inhuman rendering: He’s a really accomplished artist. Vince, on the other hand, while aping the style pretty well, isn’t actually that good at drawing people. Look at the face of that guy: It shifts from a narrow chin to a big chin, from a cheeks that are sharp to cheeks that are flabby. It’s like he had a bunch of difference pics he’s using as reference, and they aren’t the same guy. I think he may be using Elvis in one of the panels?
On the other hand, you can’t argue with his monsters. The monsters are monstrous.
And penis fingers? You don’t often see that many penis fingers in comics.
Oh, the story? It’s very Heavy Metal — it’s a sci-fi thing with mutants and a McGuffin everybody’s chasing. It’s… it’s actually not that bad? For this sort of thing, the story holds pretty well together, and it’s pretty inventive.
And there’s not any actual rapes, I think — only a couple ones threatened, which is also unusual for a 1992 Heavy Metal story.
This was originally published in France in 1992, and the album ends on this almost literal cliffhanger. A continuation was never published, so I guess it really was the end of the human race.
I’m not surprised to see that this was Vince’s first album, because it looks like the work of somebody young — who’s gotten good at rendering, but was still feeling his way around figure work. And the latter gets better as the album goes along.
What’s more surprising is that Vince seems to abandon his Liberatore style in his very next project, Vortex, and looking at some other, later projects, it never seems to come back? I’m not familiar at all with Vince, so I may be wrong. Did the publisher, Zenda (another unfamiliar entity) insist on the style?
Zenda is a French publishing house specializing in comics. It was in operation from 1987 to 1994, before being bought by Glénat.
So perhaps that explains why there was no second Eden volume — Zenda was shutting down? But that doesn’t explain, then, why Kitchen Sink would publish this single volume when they had to know that there would be no subsequent volumes, so the sales potential had to be pretty dire. Who’d buy something that just ends on that cliffhanger?
Huh. It was advertised (in 1993) as being 116 pages, but it’s just 46. Did they think they’d get Vince to complete the story for the US only? And… just $4? It was eventually published for $15.
Oh oh, I misread that ad — it’s an ad for a Heavy Metal issue. Duh.
You can still pick up copies of this album for below cover price, and (of course) it has never been reprinted.
Another mysterious Tundra/Kitchen Sink publication decision, I guess. Perhaps Kevin Eastman just liked it so much that he wanted to have it on his bookshelf?
This is the one hundred and sixty-eighth post in the Entire Kitchen Sink blog series.
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