WTH? Was my first thought before opening Chapter 1 of Chronointel. How did Jason go about creating a time travel story with no time travel in it? What I found was a clever play on his pitch in which his statement is technically true, but leaves room for what the time travel element actually is. He is right. Even though there is a DeLorean, there is no going backwards or forwards in time. The time altering elements are handled in a subtle way and a way in which they are unfolding right before your eyes without you even knowing.
We start Chapter 1 meeting Steven Wickerman just as he is about to do something he will never be able to take back. He is stopped by a mysterious man who then proceeds to change Steven’s life forever. We are avoiding spoilers here because hey, the chapters are worth a read, but know that what is happening is an interesting take on a familiar idea.
While Chapter 1 is mainly expositional and for setup, Chapter 2 is where the ideas and themes of what Chronointel can offer really start to come into play. There are questions of morality and justice, but above all, truth. Can the two leads really trust what is happening around them? There is an ever so slight suggestion that maybe they cannot, or maybe even that one of them in particular cannot be trusted. It is quite engaging and had me wishing I was holding the volume in front of me rather than just the opening two chapters. Believe that when Volume One is released, I will own it on my shelf.
I spent a lot of time covering the story but didn’t mention the art. The art works for Chronotintel. The story is real with a level of grit to it. The art and color both encapsulate that. There is blood, there is death, and it looks good, in the context of how it is drawn. It does not detract but enhance, which is the purpose of any good art in a comic.
And the title! As someone who has appreciation for well thought-out titles, Chronointel tells you everything about what the story entails without giving away what it’s about…I love this title!
Chronointel is a great read that introduces a flawed lead character, you know, a person, and sets him on a path where he can be proud of what he is doing, but not without questioning if what is happening is right and fair. These are the elements that create believable characters and scenarios and Chronointel is on the right track. The method by which you could call this story one of time travel is also well executed. At Fracture Comics, we are about bringing together people of different mediums and while Chronointel is not a manga in the slightest, manga/anime fans may want to give this a read, especially if you have a special love for Steins; Gate.