Wednesday, June 17, 2015
Signal From Space!
I sat down recently and read again Will Eisner's raucous noir saga Signal from Space (which goes also by the title of Life on Another Planet - I much prefer the former title). This story is one of Eisner's more muscular pieces, a story which has very little of the small world daily life material he focused on in his later career, but a wild science fiction yarn which reads like sci-fi blended sweetly with a no-nonsense crime drama.
Our hero is named James Bludd and he's hired by the C.I.A. when a purported signal from a intelligent life in the depths of space triggers all sorts of action from foreign powers, the now-defunct U.S.S.R. least among them. This is a vivid satire very much plugged into the headlines of the late 70's. Eisner's commentary on such world events as the reign of the noxious Idi Amin and the rise of deadly cults among the desperate is potent.
Here are the issues in which it first appeared. While the story never rates a cover mention, I never pass up a chance to showcase some of Will Eisner's rich artwork.