Gunnerkrigg Court Vol. 1: Orientation

Orientation is the first in a series of books about Antimony Carver, a girl who attends school at gloomy Gunnerkrigg Court, and the people she meets, the strange things that happen, and the things she causes to happen as she and her new friend, Kat, unravel the mysteries of the Court. Antimony and Kat deal with the everyday adventures of growing up at a school that has robots running around along side body-snatching demons, forest gods, and the odd mythical creature.

Of the many things I would like to put aside more time for, the multitude of webcomics are high up there.  I’ve come across quite a few volumes of them after the fact and wish I could have seen them from the start.  My newest example of just such a desire is the first volume of Gunnerkrigg Court, yet another series I will hope to one day catch up on from start to finish.

This first collection of the ongoing webcomic from Tom Siddell introduces us to Antimony Carver and the start of her new life at the Gunnerkrigg Court school.  Throughout these opening chapters, we get to see many of her adventures during her first year.  Along with her new best friend Kat, they deal with everything from robots and ghosts, to dragons and demons.  Life in school is definitely more interesting when the science fair has anti-gravity machines and off-limit areas have the danger of demons.

As many webcomics are when they first start off, the art for this series has a more simplistic look.  Even so, there is still such an endearing appeal to it that you can’t help but love.  The colors are also fairly basic, yet provide enough pop to liven the linework.  What’s interesting is that often times there is a great amount of detail in the backgrounds where the characters still retain their simple feel.  Admittedly, I took a peek at the current webcomic, and as I’d imagine, the artwork definitely evolved so wonderfully.

There are a lot of great fantasy, sci-fi and even mythological influences to Gunnerkrigg Court that make it so interesting.  Some of them are quite obvious, while others you might not catch right away or even need to look into further.  With just this first volume of the webcomic, I certainly find myself drawn in enough to want to dive in more, whether it be more volumes or jumping to the webcomic.  I’d like to support Tom by grabbing more of the volumes as available, and would gladly recommend you do so as well.

For more on Gunnerkrigg Court or other Archaia titles, check out Archaia or follow along with the webcomic.

Geek-o-Rama received a copy of this book for the purpose of this review. All thoughts, comments and opinions are those of the individual reviewer.

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