Skip to main content

REVIEW: 'The Shield' #1 by Christopher, Wendig, Johnson, Deering, & Fitzpatrick


★★★☆☆ (3/5)

Dark Circle Comics has been slowly rolling out new reimagined titles with great results. 'The Black Hood' is a grounded gritty vigilante tale and 'The Fox' is a whimsical fun take on superheroes. However, every publisher needs a flagship book. A character that defines a company's place in the market. DC Comics has 'Batman.' Marvel has 'Spider-man.' For Archie Comics' imprint, that defining hero could be 'The Shield.'

Meet Victoria Adams. A Revolutionary War badass who infiltrates a British encampment. She knows how to handle herself, but things get dicey for our red-haired heroine. Jump to the present where the modern Adams runs afoul of the law only to realize she's in deeper trouble with some mysterious forces and she's quickly on the run. She begins to have memories of herself during the Revolution, of a life so vivid she can even recall her death. 

It plays out a little like Steve Rogers as Jason Bourne (she predates Captain America by the way). I wanted to love this issue since it was announced. The anticipation and expectations grew even through the delayed release. The previews of the covers were gorgeous, featuring a redhead with a strong build looking patriotic and ready for action. I liked 'The Shield' #1 but didn't adore it as much as I thought I would. 

The story moves fast but perhaps too fast. It reads as if it came from two different minds and it did. Adam Christopher and Chuck Wendig are fine novelists, but there's an urgency to get this story out. It's almost as though there's a checklist of items or beats they have to hit in the first issue. The backstory, the present day dilemma, the images of a past life, the convenient getaway, establishing the villain, the hero realizing who she is or was gets checked off every few pages. 

There's very little time to develop any character and the convenient plot devices moves the action forward but with little resonance. An all-too-helpful detective, a virtual moustache-twirling villain, and at times confusing panels hinder what should have been a fantastic debut.

 The artwork fares much better but the script finds a way to interfere at times. Drew Johnson does an incredible job of designing landscapes and characters. Only when the action gets going that occasionally the sequence of events gets muddled. While I enjoy Rachel Deering's letters the caption boxes cover up the action and on some pages they suffocate the life out of the story. The layouts at times are cluttered and jumbled. Kelly Fitzpatrick's muted colors give the book a distinct understated look. It's mostly great art that sometimes ends up in a 12-car pileup.

'The Shield' #1 didn't live up to expectations but the DNA of a great series is there. A reborn American hero embodied by a more muscular version of Jessica Chastain has a ton of potential. With some character development and cleaner layouts Victoria Adams could become the face of Dark Circle Comics and the flagship book it deserves to be. 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

DC Comics March Movie Poster Variant Covers are Fantastic

DC Comics may have outdone themselves with their running themed variant covers for the month of March 2015. After some fun and gorgeous variants in 2014 like Darwin Cooke (December), LEGO (November), and Bombshells (June) to name a few DC Comics is continuing to bring some creative covers in 2015. January will feature Flash throughout the company line in celebration of his 75th Anniversary, February will bring everyone’s favorite wild card, Harley Quinn, on DC covers, and perhaps the best mash-ups of comics and famous movie posters will arrive in March.

WONDER WOMAN OF THE DAY: Fitness Model Gia Macool Embodies the Amazon Princess

The closest we'll ever get, probably, to superheroes in real life is through the great work of cosplayers. You see them at every pop culture convention from the very basic to extremely elaborate costume design. However, you don't have to be a cosplayer to enjoy dressing up as your favorite superhero from time to time. Take fitness model and entrepreneur Gia Macool for example. An accomplished fitness competitor and model, Macool is also a big fan of DC Comics' Wonder Woman. She shows her love of the iconic Amazon Princess in her fitness wear, meal prep accessories and even a full blown photo shoot in a Wonder Woman costume. 

For decades comics have featured very muscular superheroes, male and female, epitomizing the human form at its strongest. So when bodybuilders and fitness pros decide to suit up as these costumed heroes, they are the embodiment of those fictional characters in the flesh. Macool looks like she stepped out of the pages of a Wonder Woman comic with a suit …

Fitness Women in Superhero Body Paint by J.M. Manion

J.M. Manion has long been a successful photographer covering the fitness and bodybuilding industry. He has photographed some of the strongest, well-defined physiques on the planet. He's also had a love of super-heroes and comic books. So much so that Manion began publishing his own comic book, Iron Siren Comics, featuring some of the fitness competitors he's covered as superheroes themselves. It's no wonder he sometimes incorporates superhero cosplay and body paint into photo shoots. Here are just some examples of his work:

REVIEW: 'Wasted Space' #6 by Michael Moreci, Hayden Sherman, and Jason Wordie

Now officially an ongoing! The whole fam damily is back! Billy visits a crooked politician. Dust and Fury make sweet bot-love in unsanitary locations. A ghost haunts Molly's visions of Rex. And Legion pets a dog. The galaxy is still totally borked, but maybe together they can un-bork it... oh, probably not.

WASTED SPACE #6
Writer: Michael Moreci Artist: Hayden Sherman, Jason Wordie Letterer: Jim Campbell Publisher: Vault Comics Release Date: February 6, 2019 Cover Price: $3.99
Score: ★★★★1/2 (4.5/5)
The second arc of Vault Comics' exceptional space opera "Wasted Space" blasts off in satisfying fashion when the gang crosses the galaxy to have a heart-to-heart with a one-percenter while Legion and the Creator contemplate the usefulness or lack thereof of humanity. It's another stellar chapter from Michael Moreci, Hayden Sherman, and Jason Wordie. 
'Wasted Space' has carved out a unique place for itself as more than just a sci-fi comic. It's one of the mo…

The Wonderful Women of Dynamite and Archie Join Forces in 'Red Sonja and Vampirella Meet Betty and Veronica'

Dynamite Entertainment announces the most unexpected and exciting crossover of the year...Red Sonja and Vampirella Meet Betty and Veronica!


Dynamite's first ever crossover with Archie Comics could not be any bigger. The flagship Women of Dynamite come face to face with Riverdale's leading ladies to solve a string of paranormal, unsolved murders. When Drakulon and Hyrkania drop off their famous vampire hunter and sword-wielding barbarian into the small, sleepy town something is surely afoot.


Amy Chu (Red Sonja, KISS: The End, Poison Ivy) returns to the fiery-haired She-Devil to write even more of a fish out of water tale than her fan-favorite Worlds Away arc. Joining her on the art side is Maria Laura Sanapo (DC Comics Bombshells, Charmed) who just drew the Vampirella Valentine's Day Special. Together these two women will chronicle the incomparable charm of their four leading ladies.


Both Dynamite and Archie have had great crossovers with the biggest publishers in the indus…