Hedra is an exquisite artistic sci-fi marvel from artist Jesse Lonergan.
A visually driven story with shades of Ridley Scott’s Alien and 2001: A Space Odyssey, there are cosmic themes of war, exploration, and isolation.
Launched in mid-2020, over 48 pages the wordless story follows the adventures of a female astronaut.
She leaves Earth after it’s ravaged by nuclear war (memories of Akira here) and travels across the universe.
As a graphic narrative, the observer is left to fill in a lot of blanks. As you move from page to page, the imagery is so vivid you can’t help but add sound effects, music, and dialogue cues.
Click on the images below for a closer look! You can also find more fo these pages here: Jesse Lonergan’s Hedra.
The human female astronaut travels from planet to planet, finding plant life amongst the stars.
As she searches for life of any form, she keeps important findings.
Seemingly, the hope is she can return to Earth and try to restore something to a ravaged planet.
As the story develops, she discovers a planet fraught with antagonistic life. One where there are strange beings battling it out.
After she’s attacked by a horde of red monsters, she sides with a robotic being and is able to save its life.
With this being, she bonds and the two escape the planet and return to its home.
There they appear to share a kind of symbiotic transformation that provides the woman with a possible new lease of life.
And… well, quite a lot of it all is rather mysterious. Just what is going on in this radical landscape? It’s all so open to interpretation.
Hedra is a dramatic comic book. Experimental, too. Visually it’s stunning—a striking achievement complemented by Lonergan’s regular use of grid lines.
And whilst it evokes many memories of other sci-fi works (another for us being Time Masters from 1982), it very much stands as a unique experience.
Whether you like comic books or not (and we’re unfamiliar with it all), Hedra is a striking artistic achievement we’ll cherish for years to come.
About Jesse Lonergan
Lonergan states the Asterix comic book series set this career path on its way.
“My first exposure to comics was Asterix and the Great Crossing by Goscinny and Uderzo. A book I read until it fell apart, an obsessive practice that continued as I discovered new comics and creators.”
This included the legendary Calvin and Hobbes by Bill Watterson. Plus, anything by the rather mythical Moebius (Jean Giraud, a French illustrator, 1938-2012).
Along with Hedra, Lonergan created Planet Paradise (2020). And is also busy drawing lots of epic images of pandas.
— Jesse Lonergan (@jesselonergans) October 20, 2020
Plenty more work to come from this talented artist, then. You can pick up his work pretty easily with online orders.
Do so, Earthling. And forever hold your peace.