Wednesday, April 4, 2018

The Curse of Brimstone #1 Review

Another Day, Another New Age

Written by: Philip Tan and Justin Jordan
Art by: Philip Tan, Rain Beredo, and Wes Abbott
Cover Price: $2.99
Release Date: April 4, 2018

The New Age of DC Heroes train doesn't stop rolling! I wasn't looking forward to this series at all, but not as bad as The Unexpected. Our main character here is Joe Chamberlain or, as he's later called, Brimstone. For those of you interested in this series and the direction the main character goes… there's not much to dissect here. But, I'm getting ahead of myself. To the issue!

We start the issues off with a little monologue by Joe, as he talks about how his hometown York Hills was once a great place to be until coal and the factories died down. According to Joe, this town is a trap. Nobody can leave since they need money to leave, and there aren't any jobs available that will provide them money. It makes me wonder how this town is even operating on an economically fundamental level, but it's comics I guess. Justin Jordan is trying to hammer home a point. I remember his interview accompanying a preview of this book a couple months back, and it seems that Jordan himself is from a small town along the lines of York Hills.

Joe goes to the diner where his sister Annie works, and we learn that she's studying to become a nurse. A man named Officer Figard enters the building, and Joe is immediately hostile; these two have history. Over the course of the rest of the issue, we learn more about Joe's father and the such. Spoiler talk ends here.

This was a mixed bag. While this issue wasn't necessarily boring, I couldn't help but ask… where the hell is Brimstone? He only shows up at the end of the issue with an appearance on the first page. It would be a lot worse if the family drama was boring, but it isn't too compelling since it's not the most original material. As I mentioned before, there just isn't much to this issue. Not much happens since Jordan spends most of the time establishing York Hills. Joe as a character has enough going on to prevent him from reading completely flat, but he's the most interesting character of the bunch. Also, since this New Age of DC Heroes is mostly Marvel analogs, this one is the Ghost Rider analog for those interested.

I'm normally mixed on Philip Tan's art. It's too sketchy for my taste but I really like how he stages scenes. So overall this book looks nice, but it could be better. Sometimes his facial expressions don't work, but sometimes they're very expressive and nice to look at. The Brimstone stuff is just gorgeous, though.

Bits and Pieces:

This is an alright first issue, but I think the second issue will be the tell if this series is worth watching or not. We have a lot of character set-up and setting establishment and the real meat of the story is only tackled at the end of the issue. I have no idea where the story is going which makes it a lot more interesting than the other New Age books since they're mostly formulaic. Couple that with some halfway decent art, and we have an issue I very carefully recommend.


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