The Theory: Vol 1 by Neil Gibson
TPub Comics, £20
Reviewed by Sarah Deeming
In the future, humans have left the Earth’s confines and are travelling space searching for new worlds and old civilisations. Linda is an astroachaeologist, studying dead civilisations for clues as to their ultimate downfall. This information, along with any useful tech, is sent back to Earth so humans can learn from them and take the next logical steps. But nothing is as clear as it seems. A female appears at seemingly innocent moments making subtle changes to plans, shifting key decisions with noticeable nudges that are guiding humanity to…what?
The main character, Linda, states her goal is to find dead alien civilisations and learn from their mistakes, and yet she is as vulnerable to the lure of advanced technology as the decision makers on earth. It is possible that instead of learning, humanity is following the dead civilisations down the same path to destruction, which leads to questions regarding the woman who appears to be affecting the decisions made.
I was drawn in by how Gibson lay humanity bare. In all the worlds explored, no life was found, but there was plenty relic tech left behind. The lengths we go to, the sacrifices we make to access the tech, the way we utilise it, shows humanity at both it’s best and it’s worse. At times, the characters are so focused on making a name for themselves, that they don’t stop to consider the ramifications of their actions, yet their ideals are for the betterment of mankind.
The element that really hooked me was the woman influencing events. Gibson gives and withholds information like any master storyteller. We have enough information to understand who she is, but not the why of her actions. What future is she working to change? I don’t know, but I need Volume 2 in my life to find out.