Love is in the air in Resident Alien: The Book of Love #1 as the issue explores relationships besides Harry and Asta’s.
Once Peter Hogan asked an English friend married to an American about their green card status, to which the friend pulled out an ID that read "Resident Alien". But years before being inspired by the name, Hogan and Steve Parkhouse had already fleshed out a series for Dark Horse Comics regarding a stranded alien who makes a quiet town his home. Now adapted into TV series on Syfy starring Alan Tudyk, the original comic book is launching its seventh miniseries. Resident Alien: The Book of Love #1, written by Hogan and drawn by Parkhouse, lets romance finds its way into the town of Patience.
Resident Alien: The Book of Love #1 picks up directly after the events of Resident Alien: Your Ride's Here, as government agents look for their missing colleague tasked with unmasking the alien in Patience, Washington. They find Agent Jones' car and decide to take another look into the town's residents. Meanwhile, Harry and Dan Twelvetrees take a hike in the mountains, and as they talk, Dan gives Harry his blessings to date his daughter, Asta. So, the two lovebirds go on dates and profess their love for each other. Officer Bev prepares for her own date with Download, but her Chief takes objection to their blooming relationship.
Resident Alien: The Book of Love #1 tackles three parallel narratives. The book opens with government agents canvassing the town, which has been a prolonged plot point that has become cliched at this point. The second narrative seems more natural because the characters portrayed in this act have a deep-rooted history with one another. Hogan doesn't need to rely on plot devices to demonstrate Harry and Asta's blossoming love because he has already established it in previous arcs. The only thing left for the audience to do is to revel in their love. However, the final act draws on for too long, going nowhere, almost like the townsfolks who are complacent with their life's journey.
Parkhouse keeps key characters framed in the center of each panel. For a story focusing on a frozen moment in time, this gives readers perspective into the characters' thoughts. The rest of the space in the panels helps fill the world with life as Parkhouse adds minimal details. He keeps the colors simple, with the backgrounds largely featuring muted tones of beige and other drab hues that keep the book grounded.
At the end of the day, Resident Alien: The Book of Love #1 is an uneventful book. But love takes precedence over conflict, and this issue takes time to flesh out important interpersonal relationships. This first issue ends abruptly, but fans of the series will be delighted to see some of their favorite characters back in action.
Sayantan is a comic book fan based in India who loves good storytelling more than anything else. His power to bore people to death with Kaiju lore is only rivaled by his love for books and movies. He has a master’s degree in Energy Tech and loves to watch soccer. You can take a gander at his artworks here: @kenichikyuro