Written By: Pat Shand
Art By: Roberta Ingranata
Colors By: Slamet Mujiono
Published By: Zenescope
If you’re a new reader to this Zenescope title, don’t do it. This is not the issue for you. Leave it on the shelf, wait for a trade, wait until you can pick up a complete run on the cheap, or just rethink your comic selection. This book is so dense on already established characters and story line that the level of entry is too high; it’s just not worth the effort. New readers need not apply.
I tried my best to wade through this convoluted mess, fighting to make heads or tails of who’s who, what’s what… only to be left feeling more confused on my fourth read through than on my first.I’m not sure if writer Pat Shand is just trying to juggle to much on one book, or if Shand is convinced that he can pull off writing dialogue like Joss Wedon only without the cool, hip tones that have made Wedon a mega-star.
Zenescope is guilty of what is also a popular trend in today’s comic market, which amounts to a bait-and-switch, by gracing the cover with breath taking artwork from artist A, while the interior artwork is provided by artist B. I would have had a much better experience reading this if any of the various artists that provided covers (pick any of the three artists that were featured on the cover of this issue) had also pulled double duty with some of the inside art. I’m not knocking Roberta Ingranata, but let’s face it, the book would have been better served with an art style that wasn’t so rushed and was visually closer to the art on the cover. (At least as I stared on in confusion I could enjoy the view)
The plot bounces around so fast and hard that unless you know this universe by heart, you’re 100% going to get lost. It’s not a matter of if, but when. I’m a seasoned reader with twenty plus years of fandom under my belt and I still struggled to get through this. I can’t imagine a new reader picking up this title for the first time and being able to enjoy themselves.
To fans of this series, I apologize for the harsh critique, I’m sure that this book has its merits, and kudos to you for sticking through such heavy material, but this is a nightmare to outside readers. Unless Zenescope is going to sell this in comic shops with a character scorecard, I say pass this title up and try again when it hits shelves in graphic novel form.