REVIEW: Captain Kid #4

Captain Kid is on overtime.  It seems that his city is under constant attack as Halliday flexes his muscles before moving onto his big plan.  Despite the city-wide problems, Captain Kid takes a little time to deal with a personal problem.

In this issue, we get to see the lengths and breadth of Halliday’s plans, his own underlings having been kept in the dark.  There is also a longer game in play as Captain Kid’s behaviour and focus on one particular bar, in one particular part of the city possibly leads to further danger down the line.

Writers and co-creators Mark Waid and Tom Peyer have taken the idea of a kid who becomes a man-hero, something akin to Peter Parker and his web slinging alter ego and flipped it around.  You would think that the experiences of mature years would help a hero transformed into a younger body.  However, with  the weight of those who Chris (Captain Kid’s alter ego), cares about having an impact on his choices;  truly older does not always mean wiser.  This book is more of a transition issue than I expected, with the conclusion just around the corner, there are still loose ends that need tying up.  Between the pair, the pacing of the story for the most part, feels right with action scenes at a premium sandwiched between the villainous exposition and the heart-felt father and  not-quite-son conversation.  With all the good work on show, it’s a little surprising how chopped on the first couple of pages feel.  With gun crime being a major issue in the States, Waid and Peyer attempt to paint the various problems that surround the issue just feels clunky.

Brent Peeples provides the art for the book, delivering a simple style that harkens back the simpler times vibe of this almost golden age character.  The action panels have just enough motion to drive the characters through the page.  However the conversation panels are the true stars of the book.  Yes there are a couple of panels that look a little flat and there is a panel towards the end where Kid’s left leg looks double jointed.  But overall, the art is effective.  Peeples is joined by Eric Gapstur on inks who does a good job at letting the simple lines do their job.  Both are joined by the incomparable Kelly Fitzpatrick on colors.  Is there a comic company out there that Kelly isn’t working for?  Probably not.  This shows the high level of talent that Fitzpatrick brings to every book.

After the initial hoopla of AfterShock Comics first round of books, the company seems to have settled in to a holding pattern on consolidation.  If true, this is a great idea from Editor-in-Chief Mike Marts as the company won’t want a deluge of books watering down the overall quality; yes, I am looking at you, Marvel and maybe glancing a little at DC.

Writing – 3.5 Stars
Art – 3.5 Stars
Colors -4 Stars

(W) Mark Waid, Tom Peyer (A) Brent Peeples (CA) Wilfredo Torres

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