Wednesday, June 26, 2019

The Terrifics #17 Review




Writer: Gene Luen Yang
Art: Stephen Segovia, Protobunker, Tom Napolitano, and Dan Mora
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: June 26th, 2019


The Terrifics find themselves face to face with a being unlike any they've ever encountered before in this week’s all-new TERRIFICS by Gene Luen Yang. But is this digital deity benevolent...or is this an angry god? Let’s dive in and find out!


*SPOILERS* Ahead

HELLO MOTHER!
I feel like we’ve done this rodeo before. Man creates artificial life. The artificial technology becomes sentient (or sapient as Mr. Terrific called it) and tries to take over the world. Simply see TERMINATOR for more details on this. However, Gene Luen Yang takes this one step over the line that puts a bad taste in this reviewers mouth. 

Speaking about bad tastes in my mouth, the talking mouth on Metamorpho’s chest is explained as Mother Nature. What?!? How?!?! Rex is made of elements and Mother Nature is all the elements so... Biosphere (Mother Nature’s new name) can just magically appear on Rex’s chest and talk to everyone. Really?!? This is such a stretch to a story that’s been looking for a purpose for so long now and is totally not needed in the story. The team can see on their own that trusting technology which has become sentient is a bad idea. If Biosphere left the story, it would still flow the same way. 




The biosphere isn’t needed to drill this point home and is awkwardly placed at the end of the last issue and into the middle of this one with no reasoning other than the world “may” be ending. How many times has the world almost ended before without one little mention of Biosphere? But, now she appears worried for her safety and speaks of the end of days as if she’s been there and done that.  Biosphere even appears to be hissing as she talks. What soothing, loving, nurturing, and the natural entity would hiss? Maybe some of your mothers but not mine. It’s simply in the story for no real purpose. 




THE BAD TASTE

Next, comes the bad taste which was left in my mouth.  It’s the cherry that I thought was a deep misrepresentation of this A.I. and the Bible as well. Noosphere compares itself to YAHWEH or the God of Israel. Ok, so Yang may have overstepped his bounds a bit too much with this comparison. Noosphere believes he’s THE God of God’s and wants to be as powerful as Him. We went from technology to technology that thinks it’s alive, to technology that thinks it’s the God of the Universe, and now mimics itself from the Bible. In addition, YAHWEH is not power hungry nor is he a “being very much like me”. Noosphere is being compared to the Almighty God with what it’s able to do and it actually made me want to stop reading after that very statement.  Yang may be out of his element here. 




HAIL MARY

The Plagues are being used as a connection to the Biblical story but if Yang did any research or looked into the Bible before writing this, he would have seen that he flipped the narrative. The Plagues were sent by God to let his people go and not to let Himself go.  This artificial intelligence is a being that was created by man. It’s not omnipresent or omnipotent. Noosphere can create “things” and has a vast range of knowledge but it’s not all knowing, all loving, and all powerful. For a being capable of thinking on its own, it’s pretty stupid, especially if the only way it can be free is by using a T-Sphere. God wouldn’t need a T-Sphere to be free. He’d free Himself from a dang Firewall. Plus, He wouldn’t be trapped by the beings that created Him either.

In conclusion, this issue went off the rails and frankly, the entire series has too. The book has been looking for a direction, a purpose, and a story only to find itself throwing out Hail Mary’s (literally) to see if something sticks. The team isn’t jelling too well and the FANTASTIC FOUR riff is wearing out. So, this issue, as well as the arc, went towards a new direction and a more God-like approach by overstepping and comparing artificial intelligence to YAHWEH Himself... the Great I Am. And that is where I pulled the emergency brake and gets off the train. 

BITS AND PIECES:

If I wanted to read the FANTASTIC FOUR, I’d just go read it at Marvel. If I wanted to take slight religious jabs at YAHWEH, His abilities, and His motives, I’d find some Agnostic or Atheist website and read up. But I didn’t pick up a comic about a smart man, a stretchy guy, a girl who can phase through things, and a dude who can transform into almost anything to go down some thought experiment on God. 

5.2/10

3 comments:

Unknown said...

atheist and agnostic are 2 different things...might want to check those websites since you are so offended by your magic sky daddy's reputation

Jim Werner said...

you know what...if he has an issue with it that you don't have, why is it a problem to you????? Mind your own business and believe what you want to. Just for the record, I don't have a problem with the religion in the book, I have a problem with the book just being bad!

Unknown said...

Oh dear.