Rating: 5/5 -Another Relaunch of Wildstorm that’s Off to a Great Start!
By ComicSpectrum senior reviewer Shawn Hoklas.
Wildstorm was one of the original studios of Image Comics when it debuted back in 1992. Under the oversight of Jim Lee the imprint saw some really phenomenal success with titles like WildC.A.T.s, Gen 13, and Stormwatch. That success didn’t last all that long after the comic market crashed in the late 1990s due to increased speculation from people who were buying but not reading comics, artificially buoying up massive print runs of art driven comics that didn’t deliver on entertaining storytelling. In 1998, Wildstorm was acquired by DC Comics and again found some brief success with the Authority and a relaunch of Stormwatch with with Warren Ellis handling the writing.
From there, Wildstorm saw its ups and downs with some highs like Joe Casey’s Wildcats and the lows of being known as an imprint of DC rife with licensed properties, especially video games. Some of its original creations were then incorporated into DC proper with New52, launching titles like Voodoo and Grifter. Those saw very short lives and now here we are again with yet another relaunch of the Wildstorm universe. But so far, after reading this debut issue, it looks very promising!
Warren Ellis is back as writer and kicks off what will be a twenty-four issue series that can be seen on the heading of this cover. Ellis does a great job of reintroducing us to the major players that so far consist of Zealot, the Engineer, Jacob Marlowe, and more. The story is tightly scripted as it weaves in and out of each character’s reintroduction and so far, the stand out for me is the Engineer. Not only because of Ellis’ take on her, but also because of the art from Jon Davis-Hunt. Hunt’s drawing of the Engineer’s transformation into “superhero” in order to save Jacob Marlowe is nothing short of brilliant. Davis-Hunt draws the Engineer’s skin as it changes from flesh into bits of glass and machinery in a multi-panel grid that is jaw dropping good! He’s also able to give each and every other character a unique look that’s new, but still reminiscent of what’s come before.
The Wild Storm is an introduction of not only Wildcats, but also some characters from the Wildstorm universe that I’m now extremely excited to see. Ellis and Davis-Hunt have me caring about the Wildstorm universe again and with Ellis at the helm, this relaunch looks as though it has a strong chance at a longer life, at least as long as he stays involved.
Reviewed by: Shawn Hoklas
https://comicspectrum.com/ Covering the full spectrum of comics culture