Review: Bilateral Comics - Code-991 by David Heath and Anita Zaramella | Fanboys Anonymous

Review: Bilateral Comics - Code-991 by David Heath and Anita Zaramella

Posted by Sean Hamilton Wednesday, August 20, 2014
Bilateral Comics CODE 991
CODE 991: An alien black
and white crime caper.
Independent and alternative comic publications are as important as any mainstream publisher in the industry.

As I review comics, it's a joy to see the work of artists striving to find a place among all that is out there in our big wide world.

Given this, allow me to introduce Bilateral Comics, created by David Heath.

At Bilateral Comics, which started publishing in March this year, there are two separate series: 1) an ongoing, continuing story called Valley-01 that has multiple issues and 2) a collection one-shot, individual stories with a clear beginning and end.

Code-991 reviewed here is the fourth of those from the second series.

Jeff Millet, a Burkon City detective, is a policeman with with a conscience. It is very apparent from the outset that his tale is a moralistic statement on the need for people to act more humanely with others. This is more keenly recognizable when Jeff encounters something very unexpected, an Alien stranded in his city.

I like the plot point regarding our interactions with foreign or different people, embodied here by the alien 'Jessica'. Heath provides an insightful tale with an easily identifiable lead character. The pacing is considerate, especially when taking into account the issues length is not as long as your mainstream comic alternatives. This is also supported by a layout and panel arrangement that is suitable for the crime noir nature of this comic.

The art in Code-991 is by Anita Zaramella and captures the gritty, moody police drama that readily lends itself to this story. The cover plays a nice juxtaposition with the black and white imagery of a slimed, maleficent creature over a trench-coat wearing, smoking figure. This moody approach is continued throughout the issue, but highlighted by a strong use of black backed boarders.

Code-991 moody cop noir
Interior art shows a moody, gritty approach.
Zaramella's use of color in the art is polished by a consistent use of shadow and scarce use of contrasting colors through Code-991. The line work and inking is clean in most of the art work, however, the noticeable lack of background details is apparent. The pay off for this approach is that the main characters and story details remain in focus.

Code-991 is very nice introduction to the work of Bilateral Comics. It has piqued my interest and I will definitely check out their other work as it comes out in the future.

Bilateral Comics releases their comics for free at with a new page being posted every Tuesday and Thursday. They're also available for purchase (in either print or digital formats) from their website.

Have you checked out any other work from Bilateral Comics, what did you think? Can you recommend any other independent or alternative comics? Let us at Fanboys Anonymous know and leave your comments below.

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