Story: Eliot Rahal
Art: Clara Meath
Colors: Mark Englert
Letterer: Taylor Esposito
What They Say:
Oliver Flores and his stepfather, Nomar Perez, were turning right onto Midnight Vista Road when they were both abducted by aliens.
To Oliver’s mother, they were both just missing. To the police, they were declared legally dead. And to everyone else growing up in Albuquerque, Oliver Flores was the “Milk Carton Kid”. His life was the cautionary tale of an eight-year-old who was kidnapped and killed by his stepdad while out for some ice cream.
But now — years later — a fully grown adult Oliver walks back into town. He has been returned…and he remembers everything.
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Alien abduction stories in comics tend to lean more into the superhero world while occasionally we might see something in the horror vein. Here, we’re starting off with more of a domestic drama than anything else. Eliot Rahal has put together a solid issue here with how it’s laid out, giving us a decent bit of time before the event and then unfolding a return even later that feels more normal and hopefully accurate than one might think. Clara Meath hits up the artwork on the book and it’s definitely appealing – though my review copy was done in black and white so I’m unable to talk about it in full. I love the line work and the character designs, and especially the brief bits we get in regards to the aliens, so I’m looking forward to seeing more of this as it has a really good look.
Taking place in 2002, we get introduced to a young boy named Oliver Flores. He’s got a difficult life with his parents divorced and apparently always arguing, making for a really grim atmosphere. He’s entranced by old Meyer SF films as an escape from it all. He also lucks out a bit in that his mother’s boyfriend/stepfather Nomar is a pretty good guy. With things getting very loud in the house, Nomar takes him for ice cream, enjoys some music in the car, and has a good time with him away from it all. The problem is that as they turn the corner in coming back home to the residence on Midnight Vista, the two get abduced through the sunroof of the car and into an alien ship. Some of the scenes we get in the book show what supposedly happened to them while up there and it feeds into the standard fears.
What becomes the interesting point is that it has Oliver being dropped off back at Midnight Vista seventeen years later, a naked young adult with long hair. He’s fully aware of who he is and glad to be back home – though home isn’t what it was – and a series of circumstances ends up putting him in the hospital. There’s humor to soften the blow there and he’s certainly friendly, but where the book captures me and my interest is that we get the detectives verifying who he is, contacting his father, and starting the process of figuring out how to reveal all of this since his disappearance is famous around these parts. Now, where it goes will definitely be interesting but so will seeing how they handle the abduction, Oliver’s frankness with it, and what happened to Nomar.
Midnight Vista has a solid opening book here as it lays out the foundation to work from. A lot of it just feels authentic in how characters would act and talk in a situation like this and that definitely helps smooth over some other areas. Oliver’s going to be the earnest type from what we see here and that mixed with a child-like aspect will be fun to watch unfold as things get serious. I’m really curious as to how much of the abduction period itself we’ll get to see but hopefully a good bunch as I really like Meath’s designs in general but particularly her approach to aliens as we see in the couple of pages where we get them.
Age Rating: 15+
Released By: AfterShock Comics
Release Date: September 4th, 2019