A year ago or so, Mrs Hughes bought me a book called, “The Man Who Watched Batman” by Ken Johnson. This purported to be an in-depth analysis of Batman: The Animated Series. This was my first encounter with a Kickstarter and at the start it was ok. However, it soon degenerated into a mix of poor grammar with random words appearing mid sentence with capital letters as an example. Johnson also used the time when Luke Skywalker was hung upside down in ice from Return of the Jedi !!
Now why do I bring this up?
Red Lance’s unique selling point is men and women heroes working together, in equality. Now I am a big fan of gender, sexual orientation and religious equality and showing true diversity in a comic book is a laudable goal. However, reading this book, as with the Batman book in the intro, I am totally lost as it seems to fail at the first hurdle. Written by Gary Bloom, the plot is predictable as is the dialogue. To me, it seems that Bloom’s version of equality is to make all that characters as bland as possible.
Art is provided by Brian McCranie who also falls into a formulaic style which doesn’t really create a fun and exciting environment. The characters appear lifeless, although McCranie attempts to liven things up with various panel layouts, but is somewhat let down with some dodgy camera angles and posture choices for his characters.
Kickstarters, at times, aren’t actually about the finished article. This may seem a strange thing to say, but think about it for a while. The thing a reader should look for is potential; the potential of the creators and/or the characters. With that in mind, even though the book didn’t really do anything for me, McCranie does show potential, when compared to a stream of styles that regularly appears on some books from Dynamite and Zenescope.
If you want to purchase a copy please go here