Rating: 4.5/5 – Action-Packed Romp with Likeable Characters.
by ComicSpectrum reviewer Stephen Bretall.
Retropunk is a new original graphic novel that tells the story of a catgirl and a robot bounty hunter team in a cyberpunk metropolis. They are tasked with protecting a pop star trying to escape from the mega corporation that owns her and along the way they learn about each other and fight all sorts of crazy battles in this massive 144 page romp.
Retropunk definitely lives up to its title, though not quite in the way I expected before reading it. The ‘punk’ style comes in the form of irreverent characters who I really developed feelings for over the course of the book. They’re not the best people in the world, but their failings make them human – even when they aren’t entirely ‘human’, if you know what I mean. The ‘retro’ comes from a variety of sources, but as far as I can tell, it’s a lot of 80s and 90s manga and anime influences.
The story, by Matthew Ritter & James Surdez, is fairly basic, but really shines in its focus on the characters. The dialog is excellent and the character development is strong. The feel bounces back and forth between hard-hitting cyberpunk and lighter anime-style slice-of-life, but both elements, while fairly different, worked quite well together for me. Fans of both or either genre should find a lot here to enjoy. Jhomar Soriano’s art is very loose, which works with the overall styling and theme of the book – the rough lines really drove home the cyberpunk feel of the story for me and gave the action an edge that a cleaner style just wouldn’t be able to provide.
Retropunk delivers a fun story with likable characters and some exciting and creative action scenes. I got a great retro feel of the creative team doing their best to give me a fun feel-good time, with an edge of punk to keep things interesting. If you’re a fan of sci-fi, cyber-punk, ninja assassins, or robots, give Retropunk a try – I don’t think you’ll be disappointed! If your local shop isn’t carrying this, you can find it on Amazon or the Markosia web-site (best if you’re in the UK).
Reviewed by: Stephen Bretall
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