Liddy and Oscar explore the massive alien ship in which they have been kidnapped. Both are now deaf, and they are left to wander until they can find each other again. Liddy is trapped in a clear holding chamber. Oscar is on top of a scrap heap of items from Earth.
This is by far the least eventful installment of Barrier thus far. While there is plenty to admire about the comic’s ability to convey its story with no text, the plot doesn’t advance very much in this issue.
That said, I struggle to say this is in any way a bad book. This comic goes back to the idea of an experiential reading which I discussed in my American God: My Ainsel #3 review. Where that comic frustrated me with its lack of tension or real and present conflict, Barrier succeeds by having both. The comic is tense, there is a present conflict, and character is better evoked through action and communication.
This is another place where the comic succeeds: it maintains its theme. Without language, the characters are separated even further. Oscar and Liddy must find other means of communicating, and it’s compelling to watch them struggle in this regard.
Marcos Martin’s artwork does not disappoint with another comic of gorgeous and creative visuals. While I had my trepidations about the seemingly deliberate attempt to get Liddy naked, I must admit that this issue is very tasteful about it. Muntsa Vicente’s color art is once more brilliant and wildly contrasting, making another visually grabbing book.
Barrier #3 doesn’t have as much going on in terms of narrative, it is a strong character book and a generally good reading experience. There is no text, and the comic can get its subtleties across regardless. Plus, Martin and Vicente continue to put in excellent artwork. This series gets another recommendation. Check it out this Wednesday.
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