Creature of the deep: 'The Wake' comic review

By Jay Krieger

The Wake
Artwork featured in ‘The Wake’

The ocean covers 71% of our planet, and yet much of it remains a mystery. Have we discovered every creature that has ever called the ocean home? How can we claim to have an understanding of the sea and its inhabitants if it’s relatively unexplored? Writer Scott Snyder and artist Sean Murphy have captured the sense of mystery and fear surrounding the unknown dark depths of the ocean in the series, The Wake.  The comics create a world engulfed in conspiracy, mythology, and horror.  Set years in the future, the plot follows marine cetologist, Lee Archer, who’s been shunned by her peers for unknown reasons. Archer is approached by her ex-employers and is coerced to visit a top secret work site, to analyze a recording made by an unknown aquatic creature. In James Bond fashion, Archer is whisked away to an underwater facility where the researchers have discovered…something.

This series has it all: it’s dripping with engaging dialogue, has images with superior pencil work and shading, and follows a storyline that is full of suspense. Snyder proves again that he is capable of creating a universe that can captivate readers.  Murphy also helps to bring this fantasy world to life through his drawings.  His artwork is an unique blend of light and dark to represent the surface world contrasting the ocean deep, and this clash of colors and tones makes for a visually engaging comic. Despite being only four issues into a ten part series, I have more questions than answers.   But The Wake’s mysterious story, interesting characters, and brilliant artwork make this an easy comic to recommend.