Saturday, January 6, 2018

Secret Weapons #0 Review

Secrets and Lies

Written by: Eric Heisserer
Art by:  Adam Pollina
Colors by: David Baron
Publisher: Valiant
Reviewer: Andrew McAvoy

The Valiant comics line delivers a wonderfully integrated world. This book is a prequel which gives us Nikki Finch's story outlining and developing her past right up until the point when the Secret Weapons mini-series starts. Let's see how it was.
The funny thing about this book was that the first few pages nearly turned me off. I was reading it thinking "geez, this is delving into the minutiae" but boy was I completely wrong. Let's look at the structure of this book. It is laid out in chronological order, which details the progression of Nikki over time depicting events that occur by date on a calendar (detailed on the top left-hand corner of most panels). As we pass each page the beauty of this approach is it is able to pile layer upon layer of character development. A wonderful approach from Eric Heisserer.

Then we have the actual plot itself. Again the style and layout play into this brilliantly as we see the gradual build-up to her entrance to the Harbinger Foundation, her “psiot activation”, the aftermath and her escape. Again the density of plot detail packed into the panels should leave many of the writers of the "big two" publishers hanging their heads in shame at the sheer quality and storytelling skills brought to bear here.

Finally the art. It is wonderful throughout. Clear lines and glorious detail from Adam Pollina and beautifully muted pastel palette of colors used by David Baron. I've been railing against the terrible art being handed out in Marvel Star Wars of late - this is the polar opposite. Original, fresh and dynamic.

Bits and pieces

This is a standalone prequel book. If you are worrying about whether you will be able to get into it don't. Dive right in, and adopt the immersive technique. By the end of this issue, you'll be primed for the main run on this series. If you have read it then it will give you amazingly detailed background on the character, where she has come from and what motivates her. If only all books could be like this. Amazing.


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