I was looking forward to the Battlestar Galactica: Gods and Monsters series since I first saw it pop up in Previews. I was a big fan of the show and loved how it presented complex ideas and didn’t always give the answers you wants and sometimes, didn’t give you answers at all.
That’s probably why I’ve been so disappointed in the series overall and issue number 4 doesn’t do anything to turn this around. Karl Kesel (Hawk and Dove) has always been a much better artist than writer and this series could really use both better art and writing.
None of the characters seem to have any life or subtleness to them. They are like construction paper cutouts who speak every thought that pops into their heads. None of them reflect the characters of the show who all were dealing with trauma in their own ways. But here, Baltar builds a cylon. Yay? Let’s use the Cylon to mine a deadly planet. Yay. Oh the Cylon did Cylon things. Boo.
Not only do none of the characters match what they were like in the TV series, but none of their actions make sense except that’s what they have to do according to the plot of the story. It’s as if Kesel not only never saw Battlestar Galactica, but relied on someone who only read the Amazon plot summaries to tell him what each character is supposed to be like.
Similarly, Dan Schkade’s art, which was so absolutely perfect for the revival of Wil Eisner’s The Spirit, seems completely off here. It feels like he is trying to transpose everything from the Spirit into space. The male characters all have the same basic shape, so that it is sometimes difficult telling them apart. Once they get into spacesuit, it becomes nearly impossible to tell them apart, except for Baltar, who has Six hanging on to him like Rose holding onto a wooden panel.
I really wanted to like the series. Maybe I wouldn’t be as hard on the comic if I never saw the show, but I have to figure that they are writing the comic for fans of the show and not just trying to develop a new fan base from scratch. Either way, the readers deserve to get something much better than what is being served here.
Writer: Karl Kesel
Artist: Dan Schkade
Colors: Chris O’Halloran