Written by Warren Ellis
Painted by Ken Meyer Jr.
I recently came across this limited edition sketch hardcover version of a slim graphic novel by Warren Ellis that was published by Avatar in 2011. It was pretty inexpensive, and I usually love Ellis's more self-contained work, so I thought I'd give it a shot.
Atmospherics is a strange story. A woman, Bridget, is the only survivor from the small town of Helen, where everyone else has been horribly mutilated. The entire story is told from the perspective of a man who is interrogating her in a room somewhere after the events have played out.
The reader learns very early on that nothing is right with the scenario we are seeing. Bridget claims that aliens cut up the entire town, except for her, but she does not agree with her interrogator around simple issues such as whether she walked or drove out of the town.
As the story unfolds, Bridget is accused of driving over some FBI agents, possibly having a rare, homicidal sensitivity to heroin, and questions arise over whether she is being interviewed in a hospital or police station.
Ellis does his usual thing, shifting the reader's understanding of just what is going on nicely. The truth, of course, is stranger than anything presented so far.
This is a very quick read, and it works. Meyer's paintings tell the story nicely, without being too flashy. I liked it when Avatar used to come out with stuff like this more often.