Review - Misbegotten: Runaway Nun #1 (@actionlabdanger)

"We love flying by the gospels. Not one verse later."

Religion is something that can both bring people together, but also has a tendency to tear people apart. In Misbegotten: Runaway Nun #1 from Action Lab Danger Zone religion and science set the stage for a massive conflict of interest. The issue is written by Caesar Voghan, Justin Case and Eric Granger, illustrated by Case and lettered by William Bohm.

In a post-apocalyptic world gone medieval, the Church sends their top monk warrior to infiltrate a renegade scientist's enclave and kidnap the J-Clone, the Lord's vat-born twin. Saving the holy clone from the cross forces, the monk must confront the truth of his own (very immaculate) birth. Clones of Marilyn Monroe, Hitler, Gandhi, and Jesus... oh my! Misbegotten is cyberpunk religion gone mad!

Trying to decipher what exactly is happening in Misbegotten: Runaway Nun #1 is something of a chore. It's very clear that Voghan has a grander plan in mind, but much of the issue is spent jumping from location to location with little detail being filled in. Voghan's dialogue seems to indicate the near-future is rife with war between believers and non-believers, but he doesn't really explain how it got to that point. Sure, stories can drop you in the middle of a conflict and let you piece things together, but Voghan doesn't really give the reader many clues to do just that. There seems to be two competing threads in the issue--science and religion--and reconciling the two isn't something the first issue really does well.

The artwork by Case is suitable for the script. There are plenty of pages that depict scenes of war that are chock full of fighting and combat, but a lot of it is obscured in heavy shading. Just about every panel is filled to the brim with characters and action, making it clear that Case spent a lot of time to fill out the world. The problem is that every page feels excessively crowded which makes it somewhat difficult to really appreciate the breadth of the world being rendered. And there's not really "color" per se in the book; rather, the illustrations all boast a somewhat peach hue throughout.

Misbegotten: Runaway Nun #1 is pretty ambitious in its scope, but it leaves a lot to be desired. The characters in the book all seem to be waging wars on multiple fronts with a little bit of science-fiction thrown in for good measure. Voghan's script is dense, but doesn't really do much in the way of explaining the world to the reader. Case's artwork emphasizes an abundance of characters in the world through somewhat loose linework. Misbegotten: Runaway Nun #1 wants to be a lot of things even though it doesn't really settle on any of them.

Misbegotten: Runaway Nun #1 is available now.