REVIEW: Jupiter's Circle #5

Story: Mark Millar
Art: Davide Gianfelice
Letters: Peter Doherty
Colors: Ive Svorcina
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date: August 5, 2015

“Jupiter’s Circle” is one of those books that, like “The Watchmen”, stars superheroes but explores them from a more cynical perspective, one that focuses on their flaws more than their amazing abilities. As has been the theme with the 2nd volume in the critically-acclaimed series, issue #5 gives us more background on the founding members of The Union, this time focusing on the hero-turned-greatest-supervillain-of-all-time, George Hutchence aka Skyfox.

Though alluded to often in “Jupiter’s Legacy”,  Hutchence never made an appearance in the events in that book outside of a few flashback sequences that themselves hinted at the super team’s unique origin. In this issue he’s center stage and for the first time we get a more complete picture of who Skyfox is, or more appropriately, was.

Here, he’s something of a mix between Bruce Wayne and Tony Stark, albeit not nearly as dark as Gotham’s protector or as self-centered as the billionaire playboy behind Stark Enterprises. While Hutchence does finance The Union’s adventures, he never comes across as simply a bankroller. He does display a little of the jerkiness that can be off-putting in characters of this type, however; he has a fondness for alcohol that borders on pathological and he and Walter Sampson don’t have the best understanding in terms of personal boundaries.

Jupiter's Circle_insert2 Jupiter's Circle_insert

Despite his shortcomings, George always comes across as sincere and, mostly, good-natured. That’s my take anyway; Millar does a great job of leaving it up to us on how to feel about the once-best friend of The Utopian and even throws in a little morally ambiguous scene at the end of the issue to give things more of a real feel.

While Gianfelice is no Frank Quitely (who happens to be doing all of the covers for this volume) his style feels perfect for a book set during the heyday of American excess and political naiveté. He has a tendency toward minimalism that really conveys a sense of classic elegance. Svorcina’s choice to uses simple color patters only enhances the effect; everything in this world feels period appropriate and not just retro.

You should really already be reading this gem from Millar and Co., but if you aren’t now’s a great time to get on board.

By: A.C.

2838 More posts in Reviews category
Recommended for you
Review: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl #27

I did it, I read my first Squirrel Girl story. Squirrel Girl? You know...the heroine...