Delays are unfortunate in any business, but sometimes it happens. IXth Generation’s previous main artist, Stjepan Sejic, fell ill and several issues of this series were heavily delayed. Thankfully a bunch of one shots featuring different members of the IXth generation family helped bridge the gap, but it’s been more than 2 months since the last issue in this science fiction series. Good thing the recap page does such a good job of reminding us what’s happening.
IXth Generation 5, written by Matt Hawkins, is great. It continues sometime after the previous issue, where Hades IX was killed by Velocity (a cyborg long thought to be dead). Most of this issue explores the immediate aftermath as Aphrodite IX (the focus character), Apollo IX and Artemis IX try to figure out what’s going on. There’s a lot of conspiring going on in the background and the tensions between the different cyborgs is never-ending. That’s what makes this issue fun. The battle between Ares IX’s and Athena IX’s forces also gives this issue a big action scene to help keep the pace moving.
Those who haven’t read this series are probably confused at this point, so here’s a basic rundown on what this series is about. IXth Generation takes place in the far future; a post-apocalyptic world where a family of cyborgs, created centuries ago, have taken over the world. At first they worked together to help restore balance to the world, but conflicts between them grew to the point where the entire family is at war. Aphrodite IX is trying to stay neutral while the others have taken sides.
Atilio Rojo takes over art duties, and it’s pretty good. The opening spread is an epic view of several fleets flying over Hades IX’s city, complete with a variety of futuristic buildings in the foreground. This kind of background detail continues through the entire issue. There are also a lot of detailed depictions of technology, with wavy glowing lines emitting from space ships, shields that give cities a yellow hue and neat motion blurs from swords with lights on them. The colouring is generally dark, but it’s still easy to tell what’s going on and there’s a lot of variety. Although I’ll miss Sejic on this series, Rojo is a worthy replacement.
I would recommend this series to anyone who enjoys science fiction comics, although you should start with Matt Hawkins’s Aphrodite IX (which takes place before IXth Generation). The storytelling is good, the characters are well varied and interesting, and the series touches on themes related to science, religion and all sorts of deep stuff. This world is a work of genius.