Panelology is a weekly podcast about comics. We talk about current books, what we're looking forward to, and how to get into reading comics in the first place.

​​​​​​​Nowhere Men: Fates Worse Than Death (Image, 2012; #1-6)

I think we’re overdue for more weird science.

This time, though, that weird science comes at the hands of four trendy, rockstar scientists—in fact, the running comparison is that they’re the Beatles of science.  So it should come as no surprise that their partnership goes about as well as the Beatles’ partnership did in the end.  Or that they start competing, trying to one-up each other.

And escalating, clandestine fringe science never goes wrong.

Nowhere Men’s greatest strength is in Stephenson’s pacing—not only in terms of story, but of information.  If you pay attention to dialogue and art, you can stay a step or two ahead of the book’s characters. There are quite a few moving pieces, but their shape remains clear, and seeing them come into place is satisfying.  I still have a lot of questions after one arc, but that goes with the weird science territory.

Bellegarde and Bellaire keep their art clear and expressive.  Even with a gigantic cast of characters, it’s easy to tell who is who.  And as more fantastical elements come into play, their design work stays clean and inventive.

If you enjoy weird science comics, Nowhere Men is an easy recommendation.  It’s a lot tighter and more engaging than some of the others I have read this year, and its rock and roll vibe gives it a separate feel from other, similar titles.  Just bear in mind that it comes out glacially slowly—five years later, we’re still one issue away from the completion of the second volume.

Collected in

  • Nowhere Men, Vol. 1: Fates Worse Than Death (#1-6)

Writer: Eric Stephenson | Artist: Nate Bellegarde | Colorist: Jordie Bellaire | Letterer/Designer: Fonografiks

​​​​​​​Doctor Strange: The Oath (Image, 2006; #1-5)

​​​​​​​Saucer Country : The Reticulan Candidate (Vertigo, 2012; #7-14)