Tech Jacket #1 (Image/Skybound)

Tech Jacket
CREDIT: Image Comics/Skybound

Rating: 3/5 – Action aplenty but lacking in focus.
by ComicSpectrum EiC Bob Bretall.

This series written by Joe Keatinge with art by Khary Randolph is a follow on to a digital only mini series that I didn’t read, but I figured that with this new #1 in print, I’d jump on board and give it a try.

We start out with a page with a father & son (“that was then”) who, I assume are Tech Jacket & his Dad before jumping into the middle of a fight (“this is now”) with a big weird space monster.  Some witty banter occurs during the fight between Tech Jack & his dad over a comm link before Tech Jacket is back in a space station base talking to his Dad and we have several pages of exposition that I almost but not quite seemed to grasp the gist of.  There seemed to be a lot of backstory, maybe some revealed in the digital mini I didn’t read, maybe some in the previous series that ran for 6 issues in 2002-2002, which is quite some time ago.  It seems like it would have been easy, since it was an exposition heavy sequence, to have slipped in some dialog or captions letting me as a new reader know a bit about the status quo.  I think it’s a bad idea to assume everyone will have read the previous mini series or a series from 12 years ago (even if it’s available in a trade collection).

Randolph has a clean and simple style, very crisp lines and somewhat angular, but lacking in background details on most panels.  Dave McCaig’s color palette was following a current popular trend in coloring which is to have general overall color themes repeated for pages/scenes.  Greenish here, orangeish there, then generally bluish, etc.  I’ve seen this general method used by a lot of colorists and McCaig’s usage of this method just didn’t click with me at all.

I didn’t really get a feel for the main character in this issue.  Various people are put into peril in this issue and for that to be effective, I really need to care about them.  I’ve read plenty of comics that can introduce a world and cast of characters in a 1st issue and make me care about them.  That did NOT happen in this particular 1st issue.  It wasn’t bad, it was just average.  I don’t care if Tech Jacket gets out of the jam he put himself into.  I won’t be keeping on with this series since there are too many other books out there that did make me care about the characters by the end of #1.  Your Mileage May Vary.

Reviewed by: Bob Bretall
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