The artwork of Jeff Lemire just gets inside your head. Like David Lynch, Lemire is at his best when he puts trembling innocents face-to-face with the predatory and the perverse in settings that play out with the rhythms of fable. This Wednesday, Lemire is one of the contributors to the 80-page ”Strange Adventures” from Vertigo Comics (others include Brian Azzarello, Peter Milligan, Sylvain Savoia, Ross Campbell, Denys Cowan and Inaki Miranda) and we’re happy to show you an exclusive preview of two pages from Lemire’s short story about Ultra the Multi-Alien, a character who dates back to the LBJ years.
Ultra the Multi-Alien’s history may be long but it’s not distinguished. He made his first appearance back in 1965 in the pages of “Mystery in Space,” that grand old DC sci-fi series that veered from the old-school sublime to the retro ridiculous. He started life as an earthman named Ace Arn but a run-in with some nasty ray-guns left him as a sort of cosmic collage, a four-in-one mash-up of monsters … or maybe a Neopolitan version of aliens is the best way to think of it. The character is so strange that Geoff Johns and Grant Morrison have dropped him into story lines, but his biggest claim to fame is getting goofed-on during a network television broadcast.
Check out Lemire’s work in the cosmic anthology hitting stores this week, but also go back and check out “The Nobody” or the wrenching “Sweet Tooth” which, in its plot, lies somewhere between Cormac McCarthy’s “The Road” and Charles Burns’ “Black Hole.” But don’t pick it up unless you’re ready to weep for a lonely doe-eyed boy with horns.
– Geoff Boucher
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