Monday, October 31, 2016

The Prowler #1 Review

Prowling Around for Jackal

Written by: Sean Ryan
Art by: Jamal Campbell & Javier Saltares
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: October 26, 2016
Review by: Branden Murray

It’s a strange thing to tie a band new series, with a character that’s not very well known to common
folk, into a crossover event with its premier issue.  I personally feel, that if you’re not reading the Clone Conspiracy, your thought process going into the comic store would be to ignore this title altogether. Not even comic event fans buy every tie-in all the time.  So the Prowler title thus begins its shelf, with a couple strikes against it already, unless of course you’re one of the five hardcore Prowler fans that exist in the world.  All that being said this didn’t stop me from wanting to try it out myself and see what our, recently raised from the dead, hero for hire is up to in this new Marvel Now series.

Our issue kicks things off with the Prowler still continuing his “heroic” ways despite being under the thumb and in the employ of the man they’ve been calling Jackal. We find out pretty quickly Prowler hates being called a hero, or having what he’s doing referred to as heroic, but does seem to like stopping bad guys.  Not a fan of titles I guess.

Shortly after our issue introductory setup Prowler arrives back at Jackal’s base. He immediately has to break up a spat between some recently resurrected villains before being summoned to his New U boss' office.  Here we find out the Jackal has hired Prowler, whose willingly accepted this offer, to keep these resurrected bad guys in line. Prowler is however having trouble managing the priorities of his job with fighting the occasional need to accomplish tasks Madam Web has been feeding him, hence stopping the bank robbery in the beginning of the issue.

Despite Prowler believing in New U’s technology, because it was used on him first hand, he has some ideological differences, in how Jackal employs him compared to how he feels he should be used. After Jackal seeming defuses his initial concerns he asks Prowler to track down a troublesome hacker, with the assist of Madam Web, seeding clues that lead Prowler to a tanker ship in the harbor.

Along the path to Prowler’s destination, we get some background information about the character in some cleverly paneled pages, filling us in on the characters history for those unfamiliar.  Things begin to warp up though at this point, just as our story really gets moving into new territory unfortunately, just as Prowler gains access to this mysterious ships inner working. Once inside, it’s not long before security systems trip up our “hero”, trapping him in a webbed form of shackling.  Our cliffhanger provides glimpses of someone approaching Prowler in a business suit from the butt down, but these are the only clues were provided as our issue comes to a close.

Despite the situation surrounding the release of this first issue (tie-in status and not well known character) the Prowler starts off with some interesting ideas laid out by Sean Ryan to grab the reader’s immediate interest.  The art team of Jamal Campbell and Javier Saltares put together some very intriguing pages of work and I look forward to coming back to this series and enjoying more of their stuff going forward.

Bits and Pieces:

While I wonder about the viability of this series beyond potential tie-in status, or if there are even plans for it to continue after this, right now it’s providing some good insight into the inner workings of New U, the company responsible for providing Spider-Man so many problems lately.

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