Written by James Robinson
Art by Steve Pugh
I deserve something for this. Seriously, I can’t get that time back from reading this. I’m going to start with the positive points because I really dislike the idea of writing down how bad this issue is. People spent time and created something they are probably proud of and now I’m going to poop in their cereal.
Steve Pugh does a fine job on the art. He has a clean style that works well for the book. Some of his backgrounds are shallow and occasionally it looks as though he is mimicking other artists like Mike Deodato or Greg Land. Yes, those are different stylized but certain panels harken to those artists. I think if he discoveries his own voice artistically he could become a great asset to Marvel Comics. He does a great job showing the Human Torch and he has a few stand out panels which make this something worthwhile to thumb through at the stands.
Now…I’m going to start this section by saying I know bad comic writing because I’m a bad comic writer. Okay. I’m not saying I could do better than James Robinson (although maybe I could) but anyone else at Marvel could. And to be fair, I think he may have an interesting plot. But his dialogue is atrocious. It is trite and clichéd and boring. He tries so hard to make characters sounds quaint and Southern that he creates characters who are boring and ignorant sounding. I attempted to reread the issue as though it was written in the 60s or 70s but the truth is it is 2014 and I think we can all agree unless it is an “all ages” book we expect a slightly more intelligent read. It makes me question the entire editorial staff which allowed this poor dialogue to pass by them. In no way after reading this issue do I feel as though I better know the characters introduced. If anything, I feel like Robinson doesn’t know them either. And one more thing…the in-battle banter. Seriously, who writes villains stopping and having a monologue anymore? And the Human Torch is actually questioning out-loud yet rhetorically whether she is alien on Namor’s race in the middle of a fight?
I will not be reading the next issue which irritates me because I enjoy the original Human Torch and was happy to see him in a book again. But not this one. Not now. Save your pennies, kids.
Rating: 1 out of 5