Flying slightly under the radar leading up to its Sept. 4 launch, a new UFO abduction series offered up by AfterShock Comics might be the taste of something different to round out your pull shelf this fall — and SYFY WIRE has an exclusive early peek inside its unsettling secrets.
Midnight Vista is written by Eliot Rahal (Hot Lunch Special) and is based upon a very personal incident in his life where a patch of lost time led to the real possibilities of a close encounter of the third kind. Paired with vivid art by Clara Meath (Shadow Play), bold colors from Mark Englert, and letters via Taylor Esposito, this intriguing addition to the AfterShock line also sports eerie main covers from Dark Ark's Juan Doe.
The plotline follows the disturbing events of one fateful Albuquerque evening after a late-night run to the local market ends in a surreal visit from little grey men. Young Oliver Flores and his stepfather, Nomar Perez, are cruising home and casually steer onto Midnight Vista Road when a brilliant light heralds a frightening abduction experience.
Oliver’s mother believes the pair have simply gone missing, but to the police they were officially declared dead. Oliver Flores was now known locally as the "Milk Carton Kid.” His shortened life becomes a cautionary tale of an 8-year-old child who was kidnapped and murdered by his stepdad while briefly out for a carton of ice cream.
But now, 19 years later, an adult Oliver wanders back into town with his shattered memories of the lost two decades vividly intact.
“At its core, Midnight Vista is about loneliness, love, and the lost,” said Rahal in an AfterShock statement. “I’m excited for people to read this because my entire goal was to take pure science-fiction and make it feel real.
"It’s a weird thing to type on the page … but when I was a child I believe I had a close encounter and, as a result, have a couple of hours of missing time," he adds. "It’s a much longer and complicated story than that — one that I’ve been telling for a really long time. And Midnight Vista is the latest incarnation of it. That event — whatever it was — was the most important thing that ever happened up until meeting my wife and getting married. It has shaped a lot of my personality. It’s a vital part of my experience. And the craziest part all of it is … I barely remember any of it."
Interior artist Clara Meath keeps things simple in her panel progressions and punctuates emotional moments with resonating control.
“Eliot is awesome, hands down; he goes out of his way to be engaging, validating and supportive,” Meath said in a statement. “Full time creative work can sometimes be isolating and exhausting, and Eliot gets that my wellbeing is directly tied to the wellbeing of the project, and keeps an eye out for both. His writing is clever, poignant, and very funny at unexpected moments; he gives just the right amount of information to leave me free to be creative and really lean into visual storytelling.”
"Midnight Vista is such a cool premise," series cover artist Juan Doe tells SYFY WIRE. "The logo has got a nice retro vibe and I wanted to design a cover that matched that aesthetic."
Watch the skies and soar into our exclusive 6-page preview of AfterShock's Midnight Vista #1 in the gallery below, then tell us if you'll climb aboard this fresh series when it lands September 4.