The Fuse #14
Part two of Perihelion by Antony Johnston and Justin Greenwood ramps up the tension as we are given hints of the various areas set up to explode by the end of this public holiday. Attention moves from the “Haircut Killer”, a serial murderer case established in the previous issue, to the more public (and dangerously crowd-based) sources of conflict.
There’s the official celebration, mc’ed by a functionary who’s boring those gathered with his politicking. There’s a demonstration by rebels demanding independence and a medical emergency for an aging mobster, whose bulky bodyguard has to figure out how to get him to the hospital when the streets are packed. It’s a timely reminder that power and influence don’t mean anything if your heart stops, and how the economy of favors will exist as long as human civilization does.
The dialogue is great, with distinct voices, but I most feel for artist Greenwood, as he’s drawing a lot of crowd scenes here in detail, which really helps establish the feeling of gathering danger. Also, a street carnival that truly feels like a party.
I have no idea where Johnston is taking this, but I’m eager to find out. My favorite moment is when the elevators break down. Is it overuse, during a period of high demand? A political conspiracy, as over-amped participants are eager to think? Given that we’ve seen various clips of moments of people plotting something deadly, it could be any number of possibilities. That I don’t know which one to believe keeps me intrigued by this science fiction mystery. And it only takes a moment for things to turn violent, with just one ill-chosen action, in an accurate portrayal of how a mob has a brain of its own.