Saturday, 31 January 2015

Space Dogs by Sophia Parsons Cope

Space Dogs by Sophia Parsons Cope is a comic drawn and written by an independent artist living in Melbourne (who also happens to be a friend of mine). Friendship or not, I was drawn to the idea of experimental space dogs getting up to things on their own (y'know, instead of dying or coming back).
SPACE DOGS is a comic about dogs in space- more accurately, it's speculative fiction about the last soviet space dog experiment... but let's face it, "dogs in space" sounds way cooler.
So this is very much a first issue. It has its own little story arc, but it seemed to me to be mainly working through the premise to set up future stories. I believe the plan is for there to be more issues if this first one does well enough (so go buy it — space and dogs, what more do you want?).

The first halfish of the story is set on Earth (in the USSR because, well, Soviet space dogs) but because the main doggy character, Raketochka, doesn't speak much Human, there are a lot of talking bubbles with floating Cyrillic characters, with the story told primarily through pictures. I thought that was a really cute way of doing it. Later, when Raketochka talks to other dogs, their speech bubbles are in English.

The art style is kind of similar to the front cover except not quite because the interior is all black and white. As I lack any sort of expertise in art, here is a small panel on the left to give you an idea. It's all very cute, anyway. If you're interested, you can see some "work in progress" pics on the creator's Instagram and Tumblr (go back about a month).

Space Dogs is a cute comic that delivers exactly what it promises. I would recommend it to fans of dogs, space and comics. But seriously, if the idea of dogs in space appeals to you, definitely give this a try. I read it as a PDF which looked quite good on my (admittedly also quite good) computer screen. There will be a print version eventually, but why wait? Space. Dogs.

4.5 / 5 stars

First published: January 2014, self-published
Series: Hopefully. Issue #1
Format read: PDF
Source: Gumroad
Disclaimer: The creator is a friend of mine but I'd like to think this review is mostly unbiased.

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