BLUE BOOK #1/ Scripts by JAMES TYNION IV/ Art by MICHAEL AVON OEMING & KLAUS JANSON/ Letters by ADITYA BIDIKAR/ Published by DARK HORSE COMICS
When I was growing up, I was a big fan of the show Unsolved Mysteries and my favorite episodes were the ones centering around true “weird” stories. UFOs. Monster sightings. Miracles. All the things that tend to fascinate a certain type of inquisitive child, who is still trying to figure out just what is possible in the world and what might be.
Blue Book #1 speaks to that same spirit. Taking its name from the USAF Project that investigated unidentified flying object reports throughout the 1950s and 1960s, Blue Book promises to tell true stories of close encounters with an emphasis on the weird horror elements of those stories. This first issue is devoted to Betty and Barney Hill, whose alien abduction in 1961 is widely regarded as one of the most credible reports on record.
Tynion’s text is a little drier than usual, but this is in keeping with the government report aesthetic of the narration. Oeming’s art is similarly simplistic, yet full of hidden depths. The final effect is not unlike a classic Twilight Zone episode, with blue mixed into the black and white to give it a distinctive look. The same is true of the back-up story, drawn by Klaus Janson, which details some of the strangeness that enters around Coney Island.
Bottom line: Even if you don’t enjoy weird tales, Blue Book is an engaging, thrilling read.
Blue Book #1 releases on February 22, 2023.