Sunday, April 19, 2020

Bill and Ted's Most Triumphant Return #1 (2015) Review

It's that time again party people and I'd tell you to throw your hands in the air, but things like that scare me.  So, keep your hands where they are and get ready for another Just for the Hell of it Monday review.  I wish I could tell you that I have my books lined up and ready to go every Monday, but if you listen to our podcast, you know that's not how it goes down.  While Eric has a pile of horror comics a mile high that he's chiseling away at, I just wing it each week and this week I decided to go with Bill and Ted's Most Triumphant Return #1.  This is a natural choice for our site as it continues one of our favorite franchises and in fact, I almost threw our DC only policy out the window when it was originally released back in March, but the powers that be (Eric) wouldn't let me review it.  So this Monday I say to Hell with the man (Eric) and finally get to talk a little Bill and Ted.

Written by: Brian Lynch and Ryan North
Art by: Jerry Gaylord, Penelope Gaylord, Ian McGinty, and Fred Stresing
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: March 11, 2015
Publisher: Boom! Studios

Excellent...Kind Of

This series and this issue in particular opens moments after the ending of Bogus Journey.  That means that Bill and Ted have that ridiculous facial hair and have just won the San Dimas Battle of the Bands.  Everyone is there and I'm telling you, the first page just made me smile like it was 1991. Seriously, everything is going great for Wyld Stallyns except for one thing...they only have one song. Sure, God Gave Rock and Roll to You was great and all (just ask both Argent and Kiss), but a band destined to change the world can't be a one-hit-wonder and thus the Triumphant Return begins.

I'll give Brian Lynch kudos for giving us a setup that could easily be the start of the next Bill and Ted movie.  He knows the characters and everyone from Death to the Good Robot Usses are spot on.  Jerry Gaylord helps things out by presenting the cast looking a lot like the Bill and Ted cartoon which means it looked appropriately awesome.

Back to the matter at hand, after some failed songwriting and a visit from Rufus (RIP George Carlin), the two head to the future in a Station made phone booth to find out what their second song was.  The future is as cool as a Bill and Ted reality could be and I can't wait to see more...which I'll have to do because the story ends right as it is getting started.

Thankfully, there is a backup story written by Ryan North with art by Ian McGinty.  It's a quick but fun tale of emailed viruses that makes the Good Robot Usses totally bogus.  This one really feels like it could have been in the cartoon and as a backup, it succeeds in extending the issue by making the reader laugh a bit.

Overall, this issue gets everything right with the Bill and Ted Universe except for giving the reader a great story.  It's a lot of fun, but I expected a little more right off the bat.  Just when the main story gets going, it's over.  I loved the cliffhanger and it's promise of time travel paradoxes sometime soon...hopefully next issue.  I'm guessing that each issue will have a backup and if they are anywhere near as good as the one here, I'll actually be looking forward to them as well.

Bits and Pieces:

I am a huge Bill and Ted fan and while Brian Lynch and Ryan North show they know the characters and Universe, the story barely gets started before it ends.  The art was reminiscent of the cartoon which made me fall in love with it right away, but this issue didn't live up to my hopes for what this book could be.  I liked it, but I really wanted to love it.


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