Quirk’s Quest: Into the Outlands
By Robert Christie and Deborah Lang
Brought to you by OBS Reviewer Scott
Captain Quirk is out for King and Country as he is charted to explore the ‘unknown regions’ that ply the lands surrounding his home. Quirk’s Quest: Into the Outlands is a thoroughly delightful adventure that carries with it a unique art style that readers are bound to take delight in. Deep in scope, yet easily read and digestible, Into the Badlands offers the perfect mix between art and story content leaving, myself included, wanting more. There is just such a wealth of material to explore here, it would be a shame not to continue.
The plot is something out of “Star Trek,” of which I’m sure Captain Quirk is an alternate version of the more notorious Captain of the Enterprise. Essentially, Quirk is assigned a long term mission to search out, map, explore strange new places, meet and catalog strange new cultures and flora and fauna, and new civilizations – so the story goes. Although the ship is lost in its first encounter, the thinly veiled resemblance to “Star Trek” is uncanny. A definite testament to the writing/artist talents of Christie and Lang, who have lovingly crafted this wild and wonderful world and it’s (oft lethal to the red shirts – the militia and swabs men) inhabitants. Rising action is the order of the day, and the plot twists and turns owe more to the “Twilight Zone” than to anything else. Given the cast of characters, of whom each receives their own voice, and I’d bank on this. It is the beginning of a tale, not the end, however so readers looking for closure, might not find it here. If nothing else, it prepares you for what is to come.
The artwork can best be described as ‘The Fraggles” meets Dr. Seuss. In that deft line that the good Doctor put pen to the page, this follows, with it, a hint of Muppet madness. Different species inhabit this unique environ, and these Muppet-like creatures adorn it. Keeping the detail consistent between foreground and background plays a key element here, and help ground the characters to their world. The art reads clearly; the eye always knowing where to go in the six-panel layout. The lines are determined and the characters unique in their own unique ways. Playful, yet serious at the same time, the readers come to love the cast (and crew)! Overall, it’s the culmination between word and picture that brings this book to the fore and center. It is truly an enchanting work of art. Word balloons are placed appropriately, and do not obscure the action. Given the scope of what happens over the coure of the graphic novel, this style of art is suitable one-hundred per cent.
Together, Quirk’s Quest: Into the Outlands is sure to please readers of all ages and backgrounds. Both the writing and the artwork ease the reader gently in to the story – breeding a realm of familiarity in any demographic. The humor is multi-faceted, appealing to both the young and the old, and the story, is a flight of fancy that every lover of graphic art should add to his or her collection. Kudos to Christie and Lang for a delightful, fun read.