[Review] “Arcadia” #4 changes the game

A major turning point for the series, Arcadia” continues to come in to its own as superbly inventive sci/fi and a deeply complex political thriller.  As the lines are drawn and opposing forces are more clearly defined it is becoming clear that “Arcadia” is a series of incredible scope.  If it can manages not to get crushed under its own weight, this will turn on out be a remarkable and possibly influential series.

WRITTEN BY: Alex Paknadel

ART BY: Eric Scott Pfeiffer

PUBLISHER: BOOM!

PRICE: $3.99

RELEASE: August 12, 2015

“Arcadia” has a lot of moving parts and more than a handful of terms and expressions to learn and keep track off.  More than the previous issues, I found this issue to be particularly hard to follow.  Due to the rapid shifting of plot lines, sometimes 3 or 4 times on one page, the rapid pacing of this issue worked against it in some ways.  All you really need to know is where each party ends up at the end of the issue, and the important pieces are definitely over-emphasize, but there is quite a bit that gets lost in the shuffle.  “Arcadia” is a book on the verge of becoming overwhelming.

This worry shouldn’t dissuade you from investing, in fact it is often the case that the more complex the story the more rewarding it is when everything comes together.  It is a really inspiring concept that positions the afterlife as really more of a second life in a world that is very much in opposition to the living world yet both rely upon one another and have formed the most tenuous alliance.  “Arcadia” may be prophetically acknowledging a similar future for ourselves that exists in a virtual world.

This issue is a big turning point for the series as Benetti has acquired the source code that allows root access to Arcadia.  Why the president does not simply threaten to cut power to Arcadia is so far unclear, but for now at least it seems that Benetti has the upper hand as he has changed the password, not only giving himself access but denying the living world to it.  The most interesting faction is this war is the natives who have incredible powers and seem to oppose what Benetti is trying to do.  How things play out from here is impossible to guess, hopefully things slow down enough to really take it all in.

3/5