Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Sideways #1 Review

I Don't See Any Wine-Tasting! 

Written by: Kenneth Rocafort, Dan DiDio, and Justin Jordan
Art by: Kenneth Rocafort, Daniel Brown, and Carlos M. Mangual
Cover Price: $2.99 
Release Date: February 14, 2018

Unlike Damage and The Silencer, Sideways appears to be the only New Age book to spin out of the METAL storyline; don't fret, it doesn't spoil the story of the event in any way, shape, or form.

We start off with our protagonist, Derek James, suddenly appearing in his friend Ernie's bathroom as she gets ready for school. This understandably freaks her out but she eventually calms down when Derek profusely apologizes. It is then revealed that Ernie herself made Derek's costume, and he demonstrates some super strength for her. Her sister knocks on the door and Derek has to skedaddle.

We then get a taste of Derek's home life. Turns out he's adopted, and his mother has been incredibly protective of him since Challengers Mountain appeared in Gotham, which ties into how Derek got his powers. As is to be expected, some really inconsiderate and moronic high schoolers make fun of Derek for even getting caught up in the mayhem in Gotham, which comes across to be as incredibly contrived and not very realistic, especially in today's world.

After some high school scenes, Derek puts on the Sideways outfit and live streams himself rifting to different locations. This is where I'll end the spoiler talk, because these last few pages are pretty fun. DC, however, did print these last few pages as the preview of this book if you're interested in reading them.

This was mostly a mixed bag for me. It's easy to compare Derek James to Spider-Man since he seems to be a mild-mannered kid who is then thrust into this huge, life-changing event that turns him into a superhero, although he doesn't fight any crime in this issue. He comes across as a mix between Spider-Man and Blue Beetle to me. We'll obviously be learning more about the accident in the next few issues.

The family dynamic is intriguing but I don't find his parents particularly interesting. It's obvious where the writers are going with Derek's mom; conflict will abound between them since she's become very controlling since the accident. As for Derek's friend Ernie… she's certainly quirky, but I don't find her character engaging. She seems to dress weirdly for the sake of being weird, possibly to appeal to younger readers.

Kenneth Rocafort is a great artist and I liked a lot of what we get here. His art is very expressive and Daniel Brown's colouring works well for the tone he's going for. This artwork certainly feels like it's aimed at a younger audience.

Bits and Pieces:

This is definitely the weakest book to come out of this New Age line so far. I like Derek and I'm very excited to see how he gets out of this mess he finds himself in. Aside from this and the art, there isn't much that really works here. I'm hoping that the creative team is able to impress me the next time around.



  1. Whatever happened to Vibe. DC doesn't give ish for Vibe but mashups Spidey and Vibe together to create Sideways. I care deeply about Vibe and Jaime Reyes, they are my all time favorite latino heroes but they can't carry their own books. DC strives for Cyborg to succeed and disses my pals Vibe and Blue, not cool. Hope Derek clicks with the readers he will need a better writer though.

    1. I miss Vibe too! Me and Eric talk about him more than DC seems to be talking about him!

    2. this is all we've been saying this this book was announced

  2. Just wanted to say, I love the honest reviews and keep up every week even though you guys are a little harsh at times, it's fair and I like it... Keep up the great work! PS i tried to listen to the main podcast lol but that is way too long

    1. lol...just listen to the individual books...usually 3 sections that last a couple of hours. Plus, there is the spotlight!

    2. Join us , it only hurts a little at first

    3. I actually listen to all the books I read and can't wait for new podcasts. Might check out the pattern at some point. you guys were cracking me up when you went off on Batman having a bunch of properties he has no idea about, that was comedy gold lol "these god damn kids Alfred, I'm going bankrupt next month" Batman complains Lmao thanks for all the comic goodness, I'm Damien.

  3. that double-page cityscape Rocafort splash towards the end though...whew!