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Utopiates Perfect Paperback – August 21, 2012

4.5 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Comics is a stormy, dangerous coastline, shallow and sharp, but UTOPIATES stands like a lighthouse guiding you to the safe harbor where smart, intense comics still exist... ---Phil Hester (Fringe, Swamp Thing)

It's great a when a new talent can emerge and breathe new life into a genre. Cyber-punk is probably my favorite flavor of science fiction, for these are stories not about aliens or space travel, or the what-ifs beyond time and space, but are stories just one step ahead of our current technology (and in some cases our science has caught up with our fiction). Utopiates is part Strange Days, part A Scanner Darkly , with a touch of The Matrix's sensibilities thrown in for good measure.
In Utopiates we are faced with the possibility of engineered pharmaceuticals, and the lengths to which people will go to acquire the feelings and experiences that life did not offer us. Issue #1 is an excellent introduction into the Dystopian world that Finney and Rocha have created for us, but hang on for issues #2 & #3, because that's when the ride starts to really get good! Noirish, gritty and tragic, Utopiates is like rediscovering something you never knew. ---Previews Magazine, Staff Pick

Admittedly inspired by the works of Gibson, Dick, and Welsh, Utopiates mixes the swirling abyss of addiction with the cyberpunk leanings of drug-obsessed futurist writers. The first-person narration is classic cybernoir, and the digital black and white art lends this dark story a unique flair. Creators Josh Finney and Kat Rocha are to be commended for diving into familiar waters and coming up with something new. It s well worth your time to check out ---Newsarama.com

About the Author

Author, illustrator, old school cyberpunk, Josh Finney creator of the sci-fi war epic, TITANIUM RAIN, and the biotech noir tale, UTOPIATES. He has had several short stories published and is in the process of completing my first prose novel. Josh is also known his work on Batman Giant-Sized #1 title and concept art for Star Trek: Enterprise.
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Product Details

  • Perfect Paperback: 116 pages
  • Publisher: 01 Publishing; first edition (August 21, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0983923000
  • ISBN-13: 978-0983923008
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 6 x 8.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,845,223 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Perfect Paperback
Hmm, how to explain the Utopiates without spoiling plot details?

Cyberpunk is back.

If you were a fan of Bladerunner or Ghost in the Shell, then Utopiates is going to resonate with you. It's one of the few examples of cyberpunk I've read in recent memory that embraces the "punk" side of "cyberpunk". It's got the ethos down pat, railing against authority and embracing the strength of people working together more than going with a "hey look at all this cool tech" approach.

Check it out if you're a fan of cyberpunk in any respect. You will have a blast.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
I read the four black and white floppies when they were released several years ago and was impressed with the literary quality of the writing and the imaginative creativity of the art and layout. However, the colorized book gives the story to a whole new dimension. This is what you'd expect if Raymond Chandler and Philip K. Dick were still working and collaborated on a graphic novel. If you're a fan of Noir, this book is highly recommended.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
We follow a nameless hood trying to hussle up a score in the first story, "A Moment of Clarity". Once you meet The Dealer, a mysterious woman in black, she seems to creep around the edges of the story, suffocating the characters and the setting. The imperfect inhabitants of this world seem to taint the slickly designed world of "Utopiates". This contrast might clue you into the insidious nature of the world and the potential motivations of all the characters involved.

"Utopiates" harkens back to film noir in it's lighting of the characters against an almost entirely black field. As a reader you become the detective investigating, interviewing suspicious characters and drawn in by a mysterious beauty. Even if the comic seems to use the language of film noir it is not one of those crass "graphic novels" put together to woo a movie deal. No, this is a comic book first and foremost by creators with an obvious love of the medium.

There are several nods toward "alternative" subculture depicted by some the hairstyles and band t-shirts which give a certain anti-authoritarian flavor to the story. However, further along in the book this is turned on it's head as we follow a characters who are perhaps complicit with the oppressors. This sharp departure and dichotomy serves to expand the world and breathe life into the characters. "Utopiates" is a satisfying and fresh cyberpunk story that is a gorgeous and compelling read.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
Okay, so I got this in the mail, and was thinking: biotech, cyberpunk, dangerous-looking lady in sunglasses. I know what this is.

....I didn't.

Utopiates is a series of stories, all focusing (in some way) of 'trying to find self' - and of the high costs involved, in either finding oneself, or losing self. It's smart, full of references and quotes and little world-building phrases that make the world feel just as real as the Voight-Kampf test in Blade Runner, but it is not Blade Runner. The femme fatale really is a fatal fog on the edges of these stories, constantly there but not always recognized, and always a danger.

For those who love Snow Crash, or love different comics full of heart (there are PTSD representations, violence, different sexualities, different looks... but there's a heart to this, even with the edges) PLEASE do yourself the pleasure of getting this. Or ask your local store to carry it.
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Format: Perfect Paperback
For a first major graphic fiction collaboration, this book exceeds expectations. Originally published in black and white in 2004, Kat Rocha and Josh Finney have gone back to the work that got them started and recolored it using the tools they've refined while working on Titanium Rain Volume 1 HC. What results is a work that isn't simply bright, but adds even more layers of subtext to the original well composed photo references.
The four interconnected stories contained in this short volume are densely layered. It seeks to provoke questions instead of giving answers. Kat & Josh examine the necessity for war against the dream of peace, and the prevalence of a corporatocracy within a meritocracy. If Philip K. Dick and Robert A. Heinlein ever did jam pieces, this is the kind of work they would produce.
Great work you guys!
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