What happens when the government conspiracy to cover up alien arrivals turns out to be incompetent? Having run out of storage at their super-secret facility in Area 51, the agency has rented storage unit 44—and forgotten to pay the bill. Now the contents of the unit have been auctioned off, and the Agents Gibson and Hatch, the hapless agents responsible for the slip-up have to find them or face the consequences.
The tale that follows is one of slipups and missteps, with everyone, including aliens and evil geniuses, making mistakes and proving that inefficiency puts everyone in danger, but it also just might save the day. It’s an amusing take on a familiar tale. Locher happily plays with other tropes along the way, throwing not one but two mismatched-but-loyal sets of partners, little green men, mysterious glowing crystals, and turncoats into the mix. The result is an amusing tale that swerves about in unexpected directions and laughs with and at our world and its stories.
Jimenez’ art matches the eclectic craziness of the comic keeping proportions just a bit off and cartoony, letting everyone’s elbows and knees bend sharply, and giving the whole a wildly kinetic look that stops just short of being too busy.
“[C]onspiracy theories are fun” writes author Wes Locher at the end, “why should a story about one be any different?” Why indeed? Unit 44 is plenty of fun. It is recommended for anyone who has ever wished that tabloids still featured aliens on the covers or who has wondered how anyone could mistake a weather balloon for a spaceship.
Unit 44 volume 1 is available now from Alterna Comics
Story and Letter: Wes Locher
Art and Coloring: Eduardo Jimenez
Purchase link: Unit 44 on Comixology