Written by Zack Kaplan
Art by Álvaro Sarraseca
Colors by Chris Blythe
Cover by Rafael La Torre and Marcelo Maiolo
Letters by Troy Peteri
This last weekend, I had the pleasure of meeting Zack Kaplan (who also has a couple comics that sound just as good as this one – Eclipse and Port of Earth from Top Cow), and he described The Lost City Explorers (an Aftershock title, by the way) as “… a little more young adult, and more of an adventure that basically follows a group of millennial teenagers who go looking for a lost city underneath New York.” Now, I am not a “young adult”, but I absolutely loved this comic. It didn’t have the feel of a young adult book except for the fact that it deals with teenagers who are dealing with teenager problems like what college to go to (and that’s only for a brief moment). It may deal more with the teenage mentality in later issues, but as far as the first issue goes, I felt like adult readers will love it just as much as a younger audience. I honestly don’t want to recap anything that happens in this issue as I feel like the events that occur are better read without any prior knowledge. Even the opening sequence before the main cover had some surprises in it, and I was hooked immediately.
The writing is fantastic. Only a few pages in, and I found myself tearing up at one point. Kaplan does a great job of making it feel authentic and real. Combined with the art from Álvaro Sarraseca, the comic flowed beautifully. Kaplan even boasted about Sarraseca’s art as well saying, “He really captures the emotion of these characters who are 17 year old kids, and he just really captures them so beautifully.” I couldn’t agree more, Zack. There is a moment between the two lead females as they are leaving a concert that felt real and like a candid captured moment. Although we have an introduction with a kind of normal set up – big company wants to cover up an assumed death but a colleague that was there says the big company is evil and shouldn’t be trusted – it still didn’t feel cliché.
I am definitely excited to see if they can find Dan and discover the lost city of Atlantis underneath New York. The sci-fi aspect that is introduced leaves so much open for the story – what was it that grabbed Dan!? What is this new element that may have caused the flooding? What else is through that door? Oh man! Yeah, I’m definitely excited for this story, and it is definitely one to pick up ASAP.
One last quote that I would like to include from Zack Kaplan about The Lost City Explorers is “It combines archaeology and urban exploration with science fiction, and it’s kind of my homage to goonies and stranger things. But it’s very grounded. I’m basically trying to ask readers just to take a leap of faith on one concept and explore real characters and real issues.”