cover image Numbercruncher


Si Spurrier, P.J. Holden & Jordie Bellaire. Titan (, $19.99 (90p) ISBN 978-1-78276-004-7

In this SF noir romp, the afterlife is not run by a lyrical angel or demon judging people, but by a cranky accountant wearing an eye shade and doting on his cat as he adds up the numbers of good and bad deeds we commit on the terrestrial plane. Bastard Zane is one of the “number crunchers” for the accountant, carrying out judgments until he can find a dying man to replace him at his post. When math genius Richard Thyme dies young, he figures out a way to game this system so that he can be reincarnated, in order to spend more quality time with his girlfriend. Thus begins a multidimensional, time-traveling chase, as Zane chases Thyme through a variety of lives and situations, and Thyme keeps finding different ways to jigger the equations of the afterworld. Spurrier transforms what could be a mess of ideas into a multileveled story filled with unexpected turns. Holden’s art is occasionally a little cramped—he could have let some of the story points breathe more—but he makes up for it with great expressions that keep the motivations clear. Fun ideas executed with verve. (Jan.)