Review - The Misplaced #1 (@SourcePtPress)

"Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies."

True love is true love and it brings with it a lot of responsibility. In The Misplaced #1 from Source Point Press, one character is taking on even more responsibility in his quest for love. The issue is written and illustrated by Chris Callahan.

What if paradise wasn't as it seemed? A tragic journey to the new world... Two souls separated by death... After a fatal shipwreck, James finds himself dissatisfied with the tedious machinations of eternity in the afterlife. A journey to discover the truth of his wife's disappearance reveals a terrible secret even Knowledge can't explain. The Misplaced is a dark supernatural tale of love and desperation that spans several planes of existence.

Callahan's exploration of the concepts of Heaven and Hell is an involved one, using the main character James as a conduit for the aforementioned exploring. James as a character is one seemingly bored with the afterlife--despite all of its trappings--and instead wants nothing more than to be reunited with his previous love. Callahan leans on the powerful concept that souls destined to be together will find a way to do so (consequences be damned) in a way that propels the narrative forward. A lot of Callahan's dialogue is very philosophical in nature which adds quite a bit of gravity to the book's overall tone. And because of James' very methodical approach to the afterlife there's no sense of urgency in Callahan's pacing; the issue plays out in a way that feels very patient and relaxed in its view of love and the afterlife.

The somewhat ethereal art style of Callahan also helps set the tone for the book. Callahan's style is somewhat abstract, caught between watercolors and silhouettes that provide a sense of otherworldliness throughout the book that draws the reader into James' plight while at the same time providing a glimpse into the workings of his mind. Characters seem to float in and out of panels throughout the book as Callahan doesn't seem content to put any constraints on the world being rendered. Callahan wants the reader to feel as if they're following along with James' thought process and the vagueness of his artwork manages to provide an appropriate level of intimacy. The colors are largely blacks, whites and golds, infusing the book with an appropriate sense of grandiosity befitting of the setting.

At its core, The Misplaced #1 is a love story. James is motivated to end his "suffering" by finding the one he truly loves and is willing to give up all the benefits of being in the afterlife to do so. Callahan's script leans heavily on the conceit that the afterlife is a dichotomy of Heaven and Hell, demonstrating that even though one can literally be in Heaven they may figuratively be in Hell. Callahan's artwork is dreamlike in its substance evoking a similar sense of imagination in the reader. The Misplaced #1 is a very strong start to a series that explores the bonds of love and whether they can persist throughout time and eternity.

The Misplaced #1 is available November 20.