Real Science Adventure #5 Review

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The books are recovered, the gang sneaks out, the job is tidily wrapped up…or is it?


Writer: Brian Clevinger
Artist: Meredith McClaren
Colorist: Shan Murphy
Letterer: Tess Stone
Publisher: IDW Publishing
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: November 21, 2018

Previously in Real Science Adventures: The Nicodemus Job: Nicolas and the gang made it into the Great Library of Constantinople and found the books they needed, but the map they needed was in yet another section. Sofana wheedles her way into the Map Room, Palatina takes the cart out outside, and Iskander causes more chaos at the main desk where Berikos shortly arrives. As he berates the Library workers, the Captain of the Guard shows up to question him.


As Real Science Adventures #5 begins, Sofana and Nicolas see that the Guard are confronting Berikos. Emir’s part in their plot has apparently worked! But Iskander is down in the midst of the guards. (Nicolas wonders madly how to get him out and not abandon him.) Berikos loudly proclaims his innocence – after all, why would he need to steal a book he has the loan of? The guards explain how he could not only keep the book for longer, but then claim a reward for eventually “finding” the book again. And a priest is the witness that overheard that heard that the “mercenary” (Emir) had been hired by Berikos. Who could doubt a witness like that?

Just a few minutes before this, Palatina sneaks over to where Emir is being held and loosens his ropes. Emir quietly dispatches a guard, but a full-blown fight would be too loud. Never fear – Palatina has a plan! They get into the cart – and Palatina crashes it into the Library. Okay, it wasn’t an elaborate plan, but still… There’s a bit of a fight, and a switch of carts, and the gang is gone, leaving the Nicodemus behind.

A few hours later, they meet up with Vasilakas, the merchant who hired them to recover his books. He is amazed, and has to know how they did it. They explain how they set up for the Guard to discover part of a contract between Berikos and a mercenary, which made them want to look for the rest of it, which was dropped in the Library, where it would be discovered. Then they stole not just Vasilakas’ books, but others as well, so there was no obvious pattern. The set up was such that the Guard thinks they foiled two major thefts, so not only do they look good, but they’re the ones in charge of explaining what happened and will have no interest in looking for a deeper plot.

Vasilakas is astounded, and agrees to send his men back with more payment for them. The gang waits, and talks for a while…and wonders why it’s taking so long. Then a group of guards comes in and apprehends them, not for theft, but for plotting to assassinate the Emperor. We see that on the trip to the prison, they manage to perform a switcheroo – the guards get locked up, and they get away. But now there is a bigger mystery – what does Vasilakas want with the books? What does he have planned? The gang is going to need to disappear for a while to find out, and strike back!


Real Science Adventures #5 is genuinely fun to look at. The art style is loose and breezy. But it is really in this issue that the art shows us the little flashbacks that are a mainstay in the telling of a heist story. This is where we see where the magic happens. What are the little things everyone does to set up their part in the plot, and how does it all hook up together? Setting them off in a sort of sepia tone makes it clear just where we are in the timeline.

Again, I like the facial expressions. Everyone is so happy when they pull this one off and it works out. And Vasilakas is properly amazed. I was not expecting the twist ending, but it fits so well, and holds out the promise of further adventures, which would be awfully fun.


The story arc of Real Science Adventures #5 closes out here, and it is indeed satisfying. Berikos gets what is coming to him, and the wild plans all manage to work out. This is a really fun read and I like the way it was carefully plotted and set up.

Real Science Adventures #5

Indeed Satisfying

The story arc of Real Science Adventures #5 closes out here, and it is indeed satisfying. Berikos gets what is coming to him, and the wild plans all manage to work out. This is a really fun read and I like the way it was carefully plotted and set up.

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About Author

By day, she’s a mild-mannered bureaucrat and Ms. Know-It-All. By night, she’s a dance teacher and RPG player (although admittedly not on the same nights). On the weekends, she may be found judging Magic, playing Guild Wars 2 (badly), or following other creative pursuits. Holy Lack of Copious Free Time, Batman! While she’s always wished she had teleportation as her superpower, she suspects that super-speed would be much more practical because then she’d have time to finish up those steampunk costumes she’s also working on.

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