CYBERPUNK 2077: YOU HAVE MY WORD #1/ Script by BARTOSZ SZTYBOR/ Art and Cover by JESUS HERVAS/ Color Art by GIULIA BRUSCO/ Letters by FRANK CVETKOVIC/ Variant Cover by MATTIA DE IULIS/ Published by DARK HORSE COMICS
For those who don’t have money or power, trust is the only currency worth a damn on the streets of Night City. This is doubly true in the slums of Vista Del Rey, where the Valentinos gang have earned the trust of Night City’s poorest residents. Enter three cyberpunks, hired to enter into some “intense negotiations” with a local politician, whose gentrification projects threaten the homes of those under the Valentinos’ protection. Unfortunately, the councilman has some powerful friends of his own….
I’m a big fan of the cyberpunk genre. To tell a secret from my college days, I spent most of my week-long Introduction to Information Science class reading William Gibson’s Neuromancer after realizing the “class” consisted of the professor reading the Power Point presentation they printed out on Day One out-loud and being informed that the tests were all open-book. Despite this, I have yet to play the Cyberpunk 2077 game as I thought it best to wait for the inevitable Game of The Year edition with most of the DLC and none of the release-day bugs.
Thankfully, familiarity with the game is not a requirement for enjoying You Have My Word #1. If you’ve read any story by Philip K. Dick or Neal Stephenson or are even passingly familiar with the Blade Runner movies, you know Night City; a wretched hive of scum and villainy where life is cheap, the corporations own everything and most people are focused on their next meal. The script by Bartosz Sztybor is quick to establish the plot and the stakes, but doesn’t tell us much about the three cyberpunks at the center of it all. Curiously, most of the issue is focused on the family of one of the punks, and there’s surprisingly little action to speak of. Thankfully the characters are engaging, and the final page teases the intense action to come.
The artwork by Jesus Hervas proves memorable, alternating between airy sketches in the middle distance and heavily inked close-ups. Coupled with the neon-tinged palette utilized Giulia Brusco, the finished artwork evokes the cyberpunk aesthetic on every page. Bright colors contrast wildly with deep shadows and there’s an appropriate level of grittiness to even the most static of scenes.
Cyberpunk 2077: You Have My Word #1 offers a solid introduction to the world of Night City. Genre enthusiasts will love it, but this isn’t likely to win over the uninitiated who never dreamed of hacking a computer telepathically. Fans of the game, however, will find this to be an excellent add-on.
Cyberpunk 2077: You Have My Word #1 releases on April 28, 2021.