My first trade I get to read this year is Numbercruncher from Titan Comics writer Si Spurrier (X-Men Legacy) and artist PJ Holden (Judge Dredd). Numbercruncher was released as a 4-issue mini-series last year and now it’s all collected into one volume. This is not your typical mainstream superhero comic like Batman or Spiderman, Numbercruncher is life-after-death, love, something spiritual and comedy of sorts all wrap-up in one, well kind of.
Numbercruncher revolves around 4 main characters Karmic Agent Bastard Zane, The Divine Calculator, a young man named Richard Thyme and the love of his life Jessica Reed. In Bastard Zane’s earthly past, he lived a thug live and was cut down by a gun shot, but given another chance in the in-between afterlife as a Karmic Agent Operative #494 working for the Divine Calculator. The Divine Calculator runs the universe of sorts through metaphysical numbers and formulas. The Divine Calculator gives Bastard Zane his next job which hopes to be his last assignment. The assignment is to train Richard Thyme as the next Karmic Agent, but the brilliant Mathematician has an ulterior motive – to cheat death and rewrite himself to keep living to be with his love Jessica Reed. Now it’s up to Bastard Zane to stop him, but everything Thyme somehow escapes death by writing another new contract. Thyme reappears as a different person each time in Jessica’s life and instead of loving her tortures her life mentally in a ironic twist.
After you finish the reading the book, if you get the “WTF” did I just read, there is a collection of articles about Numbercrucher, like Si Spurrier’s notes on the book and USA Today’s interview with Si and PJ. There is a cover gallery and quick guide of coloring with colorist Jordie Bellaire.
A comic book that actually makes you think and reflect on life. Author Si Spurrier states – Numbercruncher is “about living with systems. It’s about rules and regulations and things operating the way they’re supposed to. It’s about the inner-workings of the Universe …”, and that about sums it up.
Hardback Trade: Numbercruncher
Author: Si Spurrier
Artist: PJ Holden
Publisher: Titan Comics
Available: January 14th, 2014
For Mature Readers