Hello dear readers of The ComicBook Imperative. As August slowly comes to an end and we are getting back from our vacations, it is time to pick up new comicbooks and start new literary journeys. Because the thirst for more stories and more journeys to fantastical places will never be quenched. The Last Arrival by Daniel A. Prim is here to do just that, to let us escape in a different and alien world. The Last Arrival is a story about the journey of five aliens in a new and mysterious world.
The first issue of the comicbook introduces to us the basic characters and offers us some really intriguing glimpses for what is going to come next. I have to say that I read The Last Arrival in one sitting. I couldn’t stop reading it. I kept scrolling down till I reached the last place, and-let me tell you-you will want more! The artwork is truly brilliant and the colouring is exquisite. The intense and vibrant colours both in the background and in the characters themselves intensify the element of alien-ess, while the story itself is deeply humane. This very contrast is what makes The Last Arrival work the way it does. Prim was able to deliver on both of his promises: he created a story that was really personal and-at heart-something relatable to everyone, but at the same time he did not sacrifice the sci-fi aspect of his story (something that can easily become a liability when this aspect turns out to be too obscure). The importance of the sketching and colouring cannot be understated, since these two elements gave The Last Arrival the sense of a world like the one you could find in a cinematic experience (i.e., Avatar).
The Last Arrival poses itself as an epic story of leaving your home, creating new ties, finding a new place to live and explore the history of that new home. This story is definitely something familiar for many people around the world. And so far, the rather extensive first issue was able to address the conflicting feelings of uprooting yourself and the dread and excitement that sometimes co-exist while trying to find your new home. All of the characters are dealing with this loss in a different way. The place they called home was no longer available and the new planet does not seem welcoming. It is really interesting see where the story will move towards to. When it comes to the storytelling, Daniel Prim has worked really hard on his idea and it certainly payed off. I do not want to further spoil the first issue by getting into too much details, but I’d tell you that you really need to check it out.
I had the pleasure to talk with the creator of The Last Arrival, Daniel A. Prim the day that his Kickstarter campaign for his comicbook begins. You can support the campaign, here.
How did the story of The Last Arrival came up?
Oh, Jesus we could probably fill up a book with the answer. It has a long history, but I’ll try to keep it short. The original idea came to me about 10 years ago when I was in love with history and comics and I wanted to combine the two, and I made up a story where aliens come down to a deserted planet and they find a bunch of comic books. That idea just tickled my brain the right way so I’ve been working on the story since. But seriously making the comic has just came up a few years ago and by then the story was much-much more than the original idea.
What can you tell the readers of The ComicBook Imperative about The Last Arrival?
The Last Arrival is about five aliens fleeing their home planet because it is on the verge on destruction by an unknown force. They all have conflicting ideas about their mission and their personalities clash a lot but they have to come together to encounter a planet full of questions. The first issue which was just finished focuses on the characters and setting up some of the themes mostly the relationship between fantasy and reality.
The story is really intriguing so far. Have you completed the story (at least in a draft version)? Are these characters going to find what there are looking for?
Yes, it’s all in my head and the second issue has been finished in script form and we’ve just started making concepts for it. It is a complete story with a beginning, middle and end. As for the characters, they’ll all be challenged in some way or another and they will find something. I can’t comment whether it will be good for them or not.
The artwork is truly stunning. The colours are intensifying the alien aspect of the characters, something that I believe is working on behalf of a fuller reading experience. Their world is different enough to be exciting and scary at the same time, while the characters feel more human. What was the process working with Gergely J. Szabo and Szabrina Maharita?
I couldn’t ask for a better team to work with. Gergely truly understands everything in the script, even the more surreal parts and also gives his own twist to it, which makes it amazing. This is his first comic, would you believe that? I was worried about that, but as soon as the first character designs started to roll in, I was bought. He wasn’t the first or second person trying to make The Last Arrival, but he made it his own and now I can’t imagine the characters or the world without his style. As for Szabrina, without her The Last Arrival wouldn’t just be black/white, it would be lifeless. She puts so much effort into the characters which is the heart of the story, so it all works like magic.
Going back to the story itself, I would like for you to tell me how did you choose an Artist, an Engineer, a Historian and Hope to be the core members of this mission. Is there any significance for you?
You forgot the Inventor. Hahaha. They are all different aspects of my personality. In general this is true for every writer’s ever character, but I consciously focused on separating my different personas into individual characters. I studied a lot of Jungian psychology and that has definitely influenced the writing. On the other hand, it makes sense storywise, if you’d like to preserve a whole planet you’d choose a representative from widely different aspects of life.
While reading the story, I thought that there are some really interesting thought-provoking issues: the need to belong, every being’s quest for survival, the use of technology (even though I think future issues will explore this one more), the feeling of loneliness etc… How did you decide to address these issues through your work and what would you say to the people who feel like an alien or lonely or they need to feel like they belong?
This part of the philosophy entered the story when I myself have moved from my country and became an alien in another. It was a very rough start without money without a good knowledge of the language and a lot of curveballs along the way. It was a huge challenge and it was really stressful at the time, but it made me stronger as a person. Loneliness too can make you stronger, you’ll have time to learn more about yourself and that will guide you through life more than anything.
Where do you see The Last Arrival going in the future?
I have the story planned out with a satisfying ending and we will work our hardest to execute that. We want to surprise you, make you laugh, think and feel.
The rest is up to the reader. Hahaha.
And, last but not least, would you give a minor (or major) spoiler for the readers of The ComicBook Imperative?
There will be two stories. One is a big lie, the other is a small lie. The truth is somewhere in between.
I would like to thank Daniel A. Prim for his time for this interview. Readers of the Imperative, support the Kickstarter campaign for The Last Arrival.
Till the next time,
The ComicBook Imperative Guy