HAVN (pkgd. w/ JD Meg # 423) – Si Spencer

3 out of 5

I will continue to support the inclusion of the floppies, even when it’s stuff I’ve already read, because the opportunity to reread some things in one sitting can definitely change the impact.

“HAVN,” as scripted by Si Spencer and arted by Jake Lynch / Henry Flint, is not the bestest of alterna-MC1 Dreddverse tales – it’s too compressed, and starts way far afield with some promising background that never seems to actually factor in to the story – but my take on it here was a lot more positive than when I read it month to month, as that compression, digested at that pace, made it just seem too wayward. But the eponymously named utopia (or dystopia…?) Spencer spins up in Nu-Iceland, into which has sneaked a member of the Alfar race – an unallowed species – has some intriguing elements world-built into it, and our POV character manages to feel relatively fleshed out in just a few pages. There’s a compelling twist, and then some badass violence from Flint, but it’s likely the story was cut short, because the twist seems to necessitate speeding things up in a way that undermines a lot of that world building, and then the tale just kinda fizzles out.

However, whereas I was happy to see HAVN go in the monthlies, this time around, I kinda wish Spencer had had a chance to work on it a bit more, as I would’ve enjoyed some more entries.