The main character of Dreamlands: Lives & Epics stands before a portal.

DREAMLANDS: Lives and Epics #1 Review

Created by: LoudMouse Crew – Stelios Pliatsikas, Thanos Kyratzis

Whew, now onto the really serious stuff, comic books. Now I said that being contacted and given a free copy of DREAMLANDS: Lives & Epics won’t affect my review. That’s true. That fact that it’s an indie comic that gets its funding from a Kickstarter will. I don’t expect some people trying to get into an industry they love to match the production quality of industry vets with salaries and working budgets.

But the book does surpass some of my expectations. While things like faces aren’t as consistent or precise as one would expect, I didn’t expect the wild and experimental imagery either. There are pages of this book where the setting melds with the main character. It’s some gorgeous art work that’s even more impressive when its one panel of page blending into the next.

A stunning page from Dreamlands: Lives and Epics where the main character is walking across floating rocks towards a castle that makes up the crown of a floating skull.
This whole page is pretty stunning.

Despite only being in black and white, the art style proves that creativity and ingenuity can overcome most restrictions. I’m hard-pressed to say if the art of this book would be better in color.

The story isn’t anything to scoff at either. Despite being called DREAMLANDS: Lives & Epics, the story is a post-apocalypse after all the lives and epics have ended. It makes the risky yet daring choice to have one protagonist by themself, without anyone to talk to. That’s a hard thing to pull off in writing, and for the most part, it succeeds.

The main character is one that will derive emotion, being a deep thinker but not pretentious in the slightest. They’re genuine, and the desire to herald the stories of who came before is a respectable one. Not every inner monologue box works, but it does more often then not.

The one weakness to point to as an objective flaw, is the lettering and grammar. I did find several instances where the text was difficult to read. This wasn’t because it was too small or behind an image. It was because the text is a strange font, with misplaced commas and strange wording. I’ve never mentioned something like this before because I’ve never noticed it before. This makes it worth mentioning.

An example of weird lettering and grammar in the reviewed comic.
Hardly a deal breaker but an example of the lettering and weird grammar.

Overall, it’s a good first issue to a series funded on Kickstarter, Patreon, and Gumroll. Crowdfunding is a way many new and original comic books get funding and I do want to help support new voices getting into the industry when possible. Sometimes it can feel like a circular industry where the same writers are writing everything for a generation at a time. I want to see that change.

If you want to know about other Kickstarter books I’ve read, check out my thoughts on The Saturn Effect: Alpha, another awesome Kickstarter series.

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