Rare as an Earthling

Space Captain by Michael Park and Chris Baldie

Something, I don’t know what, caused every living human to disappear. Human colonies across the galaxy were suddenly abandoned. All communication with Earth ceased in an instant. Humanity just…vanished. Except for you.

With the success of the final Kickstarter for this series at the end of 2018 the epic saga of the final human – Space Captain – came to a conclusion. I missed out on the Kickstarter and had to wait until Glasgow Comic Con to finally discover the fate of humanity, or at least the last member of it.

Space Captain is a swashbuckling adventure that sees the last human facing peril in a variety of pulp style settings. From the depths of space to a dusty western style planet of gunslingers and saloons to a ruin filled jungle world the Captain races to evade his enemies and rediscover his humanity.

Like another Captain we all know, this Cap was frozen for years, lost to his family and his planet. Even his name is lost, the title ‘Space Captain’ coming from the insignia on his suit. In his absence his universe has changed utterly. Earth is no more and the human race are extinct. The Captain is unique – but like many rare things he is valuable. In his case he is seen as the key to unlocking the forbidden planet of Earth and the deadly secret it holds. The secret is a weapon which is key to the conflict between humanity and the warlike Kaztani which led to humanity’s destruction.

You know you’re quite unlike the stories they tell of your people. Perhaps the stories are wrong.

As he travels he meets not just Kaztani but other alien races who help him out. Even the Kaztani prove to be more like us than we might wish to believe. It turns out friendship doesn’t end with the human race. Space Captain examines what it means to be human and the significance of home.

Chris Baldie does a great job in bringing to life the various alien races. His art has a fluid and organic style which suits the weird extra-terrestrials and their planets. The colours, from Holley McKend, David Cooper and MacKenzie Cockerill also bring life to the alien environments from the purple tinted interiors of spacecraft to the lush green jungles filled with exotic life.

Space Captain

The A5 format is nice although by issue 6 it feels that there is maybe an attempt to include too much material as some pages are crammed with panels – which can be challenging to follow on a smaller page. Maybe this was an issue with the pacing of the story. I would love to see the story published in a European album type format, like Tintin or Asterix.

Overall Space Captain is a very bright and entertaining read. Michael Park and Chris Baldie bring to life a cast of characters who are full of warmth and life and they have a great ear for dialogue. The setting brings to mind sci-fi classics like Flash Gordon and Star Wars – themselves influenced by Westerns and pulp literature. If you haven’t picked up Space Captain now is the time – you can even get it in a nice presentation box.

Find everything Space Captain related at https://spacecaptain.co.uk/

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