Last month, Vertigo priced “Air” #7 at one dollar in an effort to bring in new readers; that issue was a decent done-in-one introduction to one of the characters, Zayn, as another, Blythe, lived his life. While not a deviation from the book’s set course, it also seemed like a specifically “new reader friendly” story and, in my case, it worked enough for me to pick up the next issue. Sadly, this issue ends that ride.
“Air” #8 isn’t a bad comic. It’s simply another in a long line of comics that are just sort of there. Some events happen, characters seem to think they’re important, but none of that really comes across. Nor does much of a sense of who these people are or why they do what they’re doing. Granted, there is a sense that Blythe isn’t 100% certain as to what’s going on, so that helps, but she comes across here as such a cipher that it’s hard to tell.
In this issue, Blythe, Amelia Earhart, and a man named Northfield go in search of a device to prevent others from getting it. And that’s about it. Now, you must think that something interesting happens along the way, but not really. The most interesting events are, once again, in Zayn’s past as Blythe once again enters his memories to ascertain the location of the device.
The path taken is very straight forward and familiar, but somewhat hollow. In many ways, what happens in this issue feels like filler just so the characters can move from point A to point B, that getting the device is what interests Wilson, not how they get the device. Internal conflicts in the group add a little bit of interest, but not much.
Perker’s art is competent, while somewhat generic. His storytelling is strong. It's very easy to follow what’s going on simply by looking at the art, and especially what characters are feeling. His figures wear their inner thoughts on their faces, which does come across as a little melodramatic from time to time, but is also a nice change of pace from most artists who can only illustrate three different facial expressions.
As a follow-up to last issue’s attempt to bring in new readers, I’m not sure how successful “Air” #8 is, as it attempts to drive home that what’s happening is Very Important without accomplishing that goal. It’s really a forgettable comic, neither bad nor good, it lies somewhere in the middle.