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Home  >  Features  >  Number 1 Bullets Comic Reviews: September 28, 2016

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Geoff takes a look at a new batch of first issues, this time it's MASK: REVOLUTION #1, STAR TREK WAYPOINT #1, BATMAN BEYOND: REBIRTH #1, TEEN TITANS: REBIRTH #1, and FROSTBITE #1!

 

 

MASK: REVOLUTION #1 (IDW Publishing)-

3.0 Stars

IDW Publishing continues to revamp my childhood cartoons into modern comics with this week's release of MASK: REVOLUTION #1. Written by Brandon Easton this new version of the MASK story revolves around Miles Mayhem assembling a special ops force to use the MASK technology to help defend the planet against extraordinary threats, in this case specifically referring to the Cybertronians. Mayhem is being portrayed as a pseudo good guy but with questionable morals as he trains new recruits for his task force. This team consist of new takes on the old characters from the 80's and is comprised of individuals from both the MASK and VENOM teams from that cartoon. It is an interesting and fresh idea to start the story out this way instead of having the good guys and bad guys as already established groups. I also like the idea of Mayhem being this corrupt official weeding out special ops members for weakness. He is obviously trying find the most ruthless for his own motives but I do like that we get to see the genesis of these two groups. Tony Vargas does a good job on art, especially recreating the icon vehicles of the franchise. The various cars and trucks looks appropriately modern yet still retain their classic style and colors. His character art is good but not great, occasionally it is hard to tell who is who even with the distinct differences between them. This was the best of the Revolution books I have read so far and it is a good update to a classic cartoon. I am curious to see where it goes and how IDW will tie it in with the larger narrative.

 

STAR TREK WAYPOINT #1 (IDW Publishing)-

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IDW has added another Star Trek ongoing title to their catalog in the form of an anthology series with the release of STAR TREK WAYPOINT #1. Developed to tell small stories across the entire timeline of Star Trek, the Waypoint book will allow a rotating group of writers and artists to make their mark on the Star Trek universe. The first story in this premier issue is written by Donny Cates with art by Mack Chater and follows Captain LaForge as he leads his new Enterprise in reaching out to a derelict vessel possessing amazing technology. This new Enterprise has integrated the code for Data's programming into the computer and he lives on as multiple holographic projections that run the bridge with Geordi. This was a really touching story with two of the best characters Star Trek has ever seen. Their friendship was one of the pillars of The Next Generation and I was happy to see if preserved even after Data's "death". The art by Chater is great with a sketchy style that favors loose pencils over clean lines but it works and serves the story well. The second chapter is written and drawn by Sandra Lanz and is a stolen moment with Uhura on an away mission in which she has been separated from the group and forced to find shelter to weather a storm. Her isolation is interrupted by a strange creature with shape changing abilities and a benign nature. Their interaction over the time as she is waiting for transport is a look at communication between two beings with no language or physiology in common and yet they can still find a connection. It is a subtle story that is beautifully drawn and will put a smile on your face as you read it. I am a fan of these kind of anthology books especially in a world as established as Star Trek where readers do not need back stories on characters and thus creators are free to tell small simple stories without wasting space on background or exposition. This is a book Star Trek fans should definitely check out as well as science fiction fans who enjoy short stories.

 

BATMAN BEYOND: REBIRTH #1 (DC Comics)-

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Terry McGuiness is back as the Batman of the future in BATMAN BEYOND: REBIRTH #1 from DC Comics. Author Dan Jurgens uses this Rebirth issue to bring in new readers as well as establish the foundation for his first story arc. Terry's origins as Batman are covered for those new to the series as well as some narration that brings everyone up to speed on current events. I personally have not read the previous Batman Beyond stories so it was news to me that Terry had been gone for some time and presumed dead, Bruce is apparently gone, and that long time girlfriend Dana is unaware of Terry's return to Gotham. The Jokerz have returned to Gotham in force and with an apparent agenda centered around a new leader. When Batman infiltrates their territory to rescue Dana it is revealed that this new leader is the original Joker himself. Bringing the original Joker into Batman Beyond has been done before in the animated movie but this is a different approach and a very easy story for new readers to get into. It is a known quantity they can latch on to even if they are new to the Beyond world and the rest of the background and characters can be filled in over time. Batman Beyond has always been an interesting world to tell stories but the book has often lacked a coherent direction or real top notch talent telling amazing stories. Hopefully Jurgens can turn this around and come out of the corner swinging with this new relaunch. Ryan Sook draws a page packaged with action and character detail but light on backgrounds. Many panels feature flat color backings or limited sketchy back drops but this is more than made up for by the stunning character pencils. The world of Batman Beyond is high the sky and blazing fast and that feeling is captured expertly well via Sook's kinetic movement from panel to panel. Batman Beyond was born out of a fantastic animated cartoon that has yet to grain and real traction in printed comics but hopefully this first arc will change the trend. The art is solid, the story is easily accessible, and the villain is a true classic. This is one that is worth checking out and keeping an eye on.

 

TEEN TITANS: REBIRTH #1 (DC Comics)-

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While the Wally West from the pre-flashpoint universe is off trying to find the missing ten years of DC history over in Titans the Teen Titans are getting their own chance to start over in TEEN TITANS: REBIRTH #1 from DC Comics. Written by Ben Percy this Rebirth issue is a group roundup. The Teen Titans have gone their own ways and Beast Boy, Starfire, Kid Flash, and Raven and captured against their will to seemingly reunite under Damian Wayne. The break down on this title is basically 4 small vignettes, one for each character, in which we as readers get a brief idea of their power sets, background, and what they have been up to. Each one is done in just a few pages and the entire book moves along at a nice quick pace ending in the reveal that it was Damien Wayne who has captured them all. But to what end? There is nothing given on that front and readers will have to tune in to Teen Titans #1 to find out why but the setup definitely was informative from a character background perspective and beautiful to look at. Jonboy Meyers has a stylized Japanese influence to his art that is perfect for the tone of this book. The characters look young, fresh, and modern and the art jumps off the page. The entire package works well as a Rebirth title and sets the stage for the ongoing series that will hopefully feature a return to Meyers on art. That said I think this issue can be skipped by all but readers looking for their first trip into the world of the Teen Titans.

 

FROSTBITE #1 (Vertigo Comics)-

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From Vertigo Comics and the creative team of Joshua Williamson and Jason Shawn Alexander comes FROSTBITE #1, a look at the struggle to survive a near future in which humanity has been pushed to the brink by an unexpected ice age. We meet Keaton, a young woman who leads a small band of smugglers who can get you what you need or take you where you need to go... for the right price. She is compassionate yet maintains her appropriate cold perspective on things. When Dr. Walter Hawthorn and his daughter request passage to Alcatraz island the money seems too good to be true and turns out to be just that. Hawthorn is one of the few responsible for this man made climate disaster and is struck down by Keaton when she learns the truth. Like I said, her compassion will lead Dr. Hawthorn's daughter to Alcatraz but she should not forgive the man for the genocide he unleashed on the planet. This warm and cold dichotomy brings a lot to the character and makes her seem more real in the eyes of the reader. The world building is done well and by the end of the first issue we know enough to have a firm grasp of place but there are still plenty of holes to fill in to the keep the mystery going. The main characters are introduced and the initial plot is set now Williamson needs a strong first arc to grab readers for the duration of his story. The art by Jason Shawn Alexander is fantastic and very reminiscent of Alex Maleev in both tone and style. Character work is very detailed and realistic yet some of the pencil work is loose enough that it does not appear overly produced. I cannot say enough about the way this book looks, I really think it is just amazing work. The strong art style and cool world have convinced me to give the first story arc a shot and see where this is heading.

 

Don't just take our word for it. Grab the books yourself and let us know what you think!

 

More Reviews on MightyVille:

Number 1 Bullets Comic Reviews: September 21, 2016

Number 1 Bullets Comic Reviews: September 14, 2016

Number 1 Bullets Comic Reviews: September 07, 2016

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