Groom Lake #3 (IDW – Ryall / Templesmith)
A grey alien, a lethal robot, a pair of homicidal blobs, and a pair of extra (-special) terrestrials make up the oddest team in this galaxy. And when a rogue agent orders the entire alien program shut down, they just might be the only chance our planet has. If only they weren’t also the biggest threat we’ve ever faced…
Most readers will really enjoy this re-imagining of this “area 51” mythology tale under the helm of creative storyteller Chris Ryall. Ryall sets down a landscape very similar in structure to the “Men In Black” movies – a secret government organization that is and has been in contact with aliens for a long time, and is “protecting” the general population from the truth. The reader is introduced to these “truths” through the eyes of Karl Bauer, a young redneck who was unaware that his family line has a long history with these aliens. There are several hard to swallow truths that Karl uncovers, the hardest one being that this secret government organization are the bad guys!
Ryall’s cast of characters are both eclectic and interesting enough to keep the readers looking for more – from the the anal “bitch in charge” who sees civilian deaths as just rungs up the career ladder to the genderless inquisitive aliens who are overly interested in the human body functions to the oddball local UFO-hunter types. But the story and characters are not the only thing worth pursuing in Groom Lake. The unique layout and art of Ben Templesmith shine is a story like this. Templesmith’s work is always a high-quality, multi-layered, multi-media event that is more than simply a frame for the story to be told within – but it is an intricate part of the story itself. In the same way a good narrator can transform and shape a tale simply through the use of good oral interpretation tools, Templesmith helps positively shape everything about Groom Lake through the use of his visual tools.
Groom Lake shows that Ryall and Templesmith not only can work together and mesh well, but actually enhance each other’s skills as it relates to the final product.
Issue Grade: A