Jumping-On: "They're Not Like Us"
- by Señor Editor, 30 January 2015
If Charles Xavier opened his school just so he and the other mutants could hide there, while using their powers solely for their own benefit, it would be kind of like Eric Stephenson’s and Simon Gane’s “They’re Not Like Us”. If the X-Men were additionally kind of douchebags, it would be EXACTLY like Stephenson’s and Gane’s comic. In a good way.
Later on, we see some of the Voice’s crew beating up a regular guy seemingly because they want his nice vintage headphones. That’s terrible! We later find out that this was only part of the reason for assaulting the guy. The real reason is because he’s a tagger, and the clairvoyant of the group knew he would tag in their neighborhood, thus attracting attention to their place. That’s… still a pretty bad reason to kick somebody’s ass. They beat him up, steal his stuff and spray paint “FUCK TAGGERS” on him.
So why is this comic good? Well, you will have to believe me when I say writer Eric Stephenson does a really good job of showing how tempting it might be to live a life of luxury at the cost of occasionally doing something awful. Syd thinks it’s crazy at first, but later on she finds herself feeling at peace with all this. Feeling excited at the groups violence and arrogance towards anybody outside of their circle. She thinks maybe she has a right to be “a little bad”. And it’s all written in a very compelling way.
On the art side of things, Simon Gane (pencils) and Jordie Bellaire (colors) are making the book look really nice. They work really well together, and Gane’s detailed and clean style works well with Bellaire’s vibrant colors. Gane also has a knack for drawing great facial expressions, something that really helps in telling the story here.
This comic does a much better job of addressing the ethical choices related to having “superpowers” than most of the comics I’ve read in the last 25 years. Wouldn’t YOU be a bit of a dick if you had powers? You would, wouldn’t you? Power corrupts, and superpowers super corrupt. If you knew full well that people would hate and fear you because of your special skills, you might find yourself enjoying taking it out on society. How would you live with yourself when you enjoy being bad? It seems like this topic is what “They’re Not Like Us” will be addressing, and I’m looking forward to it. Gane and Stephenson are doing a really good job with it so far.
This is a very promising book, and I will definitely keep an eye on it. If you haven’t picked it up yet, I really recommend it. Buy it!
Bought it yet? Planning to buy it? Liking it? Not liking it? Just tell us in the comments already!