City of Tomorrow
♦ Tripwire’s editor-in-chief JOEL MEADOWS takes a look at the first Paradiso trade paperback out now from Image…
Paradiso: Essential Singularity
Writer: Ram V
Artist: Devmalya Pramanik
Colours: Dearbhla Kelly, Alex Sollazzzo
Letters: Aditya Bidikar
Ram V is a writer originally from Mumbai in India who has lived in London for a number of years now. Comics anthology Black Mumba, featuring stories written by him and illustrated by a number of different artists, came out at the end of 2016 and since then, he has started to make his name in the comics industry. Black Mumba was a very accomplished hardcover and anyone who has read that will see that Ram V continues to develop and evolve as a writer. Paradiso is a sci fi series from Image and this trade reprints the first four issues of that series.
Paradiso is a very ambitious series with Ram V’s muscular kinetic writing perfectly matched by Dev Pramanik’s elegantly modern art. You can see Otomo’s Akira, George Miller’s Mad Max and even echoes of 2000AD in it. It also feels quite literary at times too, bringing in influences from novels and sci f short stories too. The city of Paradiso is one of the story’s main protagonists as is Jack Kryznan, an enigmatic figure who arrives at the start of the story on a quest that is only partly unravelled at the end of this first arc.
Ram V has a good ear for dialogue and situations and artist Pramanik is the perfect foil for his sophisticated tale. We are left at the end here curious to read more of this tale of Paradiso and Jack. Ram V is one of the boldest and most impressive writers to hit comics over the last couple of years and Paradiso is a great slice of intelligent graphic sci fi that asks questions of its audience while still managing to maintain its dramatic momentum. It also manages to imbue everything with a true sense of the fabulous and the legendary.
Some of it is a little primitive but considering that this is one of Ram V’s first longer form comic stories, it is a very auspicious series debut.