Story Synopsis: The Wake

A mysterious sound recorded from the depths of the ocean causes an investigation which will change the world forever in this week’s Comic Rewind, The Wake.

Dr. Lee Archer was an expert in cetology or the study of whales, dolphins and porpoises.  However, her specialty was the vocalizations of these animals.  One day while following a whale she received a special visit from the Department of Homeland Security’s Agent Astor Cruz.

Cruz told her about a weird vocalization they discovered while in a top secret underwater facility.  Archer at first wasn’t all that interested until he played the sound for her.  It was unlike anything she had heard before.  

The Wake

Cruz needed Archer’s help determining what this sound was and what it came from because they had it locked up alive in their facility.  Cruz offered her the one thing she wanted most in life and couldn’t get on her own, custody of her son.

Once in the facility it was revealed Cruz had recruited some of the foremost experts in the world including a professor of folkology and mythology.  This creature was a mermaid or a merman with razor sharp teeth.  The team began calling them mers.  However, as time went on Archer learned the call was a call for help and hundreds of mers were about to descend on the facility.

The second part of the book was set 200 years in the future in a world almost completely flooded and ruled by the mers.  Leeward once heard a strange radio message from Archer and made it her life mission to find the source of this distress call.

The Wake was written by Scott Snyder with art by Sean Murphy and Matt Hollingsworth.  DC Comics’ Vertigo imprint published the volume in 2014.

The Wake Had Some Cool Alien/s Vibes

I read this comic probably in 2014 and absolutely loved it.  This was one of my favorite comics I had ever read.  However, after reading it a second time I liked it much less.

The first part of the story focusing on trying to figure out what the mers are is amazing.  It has definite Alien and Aliens vibes with the mers hunting the humans and the conflict between the two sides.  I wish that part of the story was much longer and had a lot more depth.  It was absolutely amazing and kept me guessing the whole time.  

The Wake

Going To The Future Made The Wake “Jump The Shark”

However, the future part with Leeward was very boring and confusing.  The comic glosses over 200 years of events and those years I would have liked to see.  I would have liked for this comic to be multiple volumes.  Maybe the first being Archer and her team, second volume 50 years in the future, the third 100 years and finally Leeward’s story 200 years in the future.

We don’t get any kind of explanation as to why the mers attacked, but are told they are a lot smarter than they look and planned it out.  I would like to know why they chose now to attack when the last time they attacked was Noah’s Ark.

The explanation of Archer’s signal was confusing as well.  I didn’t understand how it was transmitted for 200 years and no one listened and the signal didn’t really have a source.  It gave coordinates, but it didn’t give a good explanation as to how Archer got those coordinates.

Half A Fantastic Comic

I liked this comic a lot and remember liking the future stuff too, but I was really wrong about that part being good.  Maybe the first part was so good that I forgot about the second part being so bad.

This is a great sci-fi comic with a lot of cool elements and could have gone in a really great direction, but lost a ton of steam when the time shifted to the future.  However, this is a comic worth reading just beware of the big drop.



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