January 31, 2012


(Yes, I received an electronic copy for purposes of review. It's a legal thing. I have to do it - please read this for more details)

You know, one of the cool things about being co-host of the Zone 4 podcast is that it allows me to hang out with some cool people, and get a heads-up on upcoming projects.

(Well, that and my first comic scripting gig. I've been working on it for the past week. Will let you all know the results)

Pal Mike Luoma sent me a preview copy of Introducing: Red Hot (being published by Earthbound Comics), and I have to say....even if he weren't a pal, I would still like this book.

It's kind of a good take on the "legacy" hero - it's the kind of book that feels like a well-written version of some of the themes Geoff Johns was attempting in his most recent JSA run. However, it's a little less on the angst, and has a really great twist that makes the book a little bit more readable than the usual young-hero-proving-himself fare. There's actually a pretty cool undercurrent of conflict, making it a very clever way of handling material that the reader has (more than likely) encountered previously.

Although I enjoyed the writing (I should dare Mike to write a deliberately poor book in order for me to tell the difference), what makes Introducing: Red Hot a standout book is the artwork by Rhys ap Gwyn. It seems slightly reminiscent of Powers, but (and this is just my opinion) there's a much greater sense of drama, and a much less gritty tone. It gives the book the appropriate amount of heaviness and impact - I never felt that anything was over-the-top, and situations which could have possibly seemed cliche actually came as flat-out surprises.

(Again, let me mention Mike's writing - his characterizations are strong, and there's never a sense of inevitability or let's-telegraph-this- plot-point in this book. It's a strong start to what hopefully will be a continually strong series).

Introducing: Red Hot is available as a print on demand (POD) book through Earthbound Comics. For those of you who may be curious about ordering a comic online....this month, consider dropping an issue of another book that's disappointing you, and spend your money at Earthbound for this issue. It will be the best comics investment you'll make this week. I promise.

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