Can we just acknowledge, once and for all, that Mark Waid is a great world builder? I mean, this series and its companion, Irredeemable, have created a universe with a rich cast including heroes, villains, alien races and alternate dimensions. I have to give credit where credit is due, and Waidís work with BOOM! deserves credit for the sheer creativity it exudes.
That said, this issue is a pretty weak effort by Waid.
First, let me get my biggest complaint out: how did Bellamy get ahold of those weapons? Even if the character he got them off of is no longer in the game, youíd think such a master planner would have made sure his arsenal stayed hidden, or was at least found by the right people. A sonic cannon picked up at an estate sale? Are you kidding me? It strains credibility to an annoying degree.
Yes, Iím aware this is a superhero comic, why do you ask?
Also, the argument between Max and Bellamy? It took eight pages. These are bookended by a page each of Max arguing with Alana. And honestly, we all knew how this debate would end. There is no reason to take up that much space with so little story. That noticeable absence of substance ultimately rendered this story the one thing superhero comics should never be: boring.
Looking at the art now, I will say that Marcio Takara has a lot of potential. At times I saw flashes of Francis Manapul or Dustin Nguyen in his art, but itís just that: potential. In the first page, Takara demonstrates a knack for subtlety. A raised eyebrow was enough to make me chuckle. Unfortunately, the rest of the issue is a lot of typical, angst-ridden poses. Seriously, Bellamy has some serious missed opportunities to look like the crazy old man Waid writes him to be. Likewise, the obligatory fight scene (which feels extra obligatory and pointless this month) is awfully static. There is some good stuff mixed in there, but the shots are few and far between this month.
This alliance in this issue will likely be an important plot point in the saga of Max Damage. If youíre a casual reader, however, this might be a month to save your $3.99 for something with a bit more meat on its bones.
What did you think of this book?
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