Skip to main content

REVIEW: 'Power Lines' #1 by Jimmie Robinson



★★★★☆ (4/5)

Anytime Jimmie Robinson (Five Weapons, The Empty) has a new comic book series out you know it's going to be special because he pours every bit of himself into each project. As writer, artist, colorist, and letterer, it's all on Jimmie Robinson. 'Power Lines' is at first glance a superhero origin story but as you look closer it's also about the empowerment of a young black man who's given a chance to turn his life around. 

D-Trick is that young man who along with his tagging crew hit up the upscale white suburb across the bridge to make their mark. While applying graffiti, D-Trick is approached by police officers and suddenly is imbued with powers. An ancient Native American source of mystical power called "power lines" forms a triangular shape that cuts across the mostly white California town and it's also the only place D-Trick can use his powers. Placing the kid from the other side of the tracks, a disenfranchised  urban area, in unfamiliar territory but now with higher aspirations. 

Robinson touches on socially relevant issues like racism and police brutality. The unarmed D-Trick's thoughts as he's evading the police is hoping not to be shot to death. A poignant reminder of the realities of black lives lost at the hands of the police. The racism is clearly embodied by the lady whose purse was stolen by D-Trick's partner and her rant, while it almost makes her a caricature, isn't too far from reality considering what we've seen in this current political climate. This is a more grounded comic book story about characters we don't usually see especially a young black man as the primary hero. 

Let's not dwell too much on that aspect because there's more going on as the use of powers has a mysterious figure hidden in the shadows worried. A Native American man is concerned as the power lines have existed for thousands of years, often dormant, but it's return has raised an alarm. 

Robinson as usual does a wonderful job of bringing a bright world to life with sketchy drawings and bold pastels to infuse his panels. The characters convey so much in their expressions that emphasize their words even more. He has a style all his own that is always clean and clear. The layouts provide a wide scope of backgrounds and angles. It's almost unfair that Robinson does all his art and lettering and does it so well. He's making other artists look like slackers. 

'Power Lines' is a unique and important series that uses familiar superhero tropes to inform about the real world. Robinson is blazing a trail mixing real issues with fantastical supernatural powers in a premiere issue that teases at darker forces. It raises some questions and places a person of color in the limelight for once. 'Power Lines' is definitely worth picking up. 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

NYCC: Dynamite's Next 25-Cent Revival is 'Dejah Thoris' with Amy Chu

The Princess of Mars is set to return to her throne this January, as Dynamite Entertainment announces the relaunch of one of their most beloved characters, Dejah Thoris. Writer Amy Chu (Poison Ivy, Red Sonja, KISS) will bring the strong, iconic character back to the comics in the debut issue Dejah Thoris #0, which will retail for 25 cents and allow fans to join the adventure at this introductory price.


This replicates the outstanding debut of Sheena #0, which broke 120,000 sales. Retailers can confidently stock their shelves with extra copies of this red-hot new series.

This exciting prequel to Edgar Rice Burroughs' beloved book, A Princess of Mars, will delve into the untold story of the classic Red Martian princess!  After learning of the legendary Gardens of Mars from her grandfather, Dejah Thoris, Princess of Helium, sets off on a dangerous scientific expedition to save her dying planet. But things don't go the way she planned when she encounters a mysterious Green Martian…

PREVIEW: 'Sovereigns' #5 by Ray Fawkes and Dylan Burnett

This is it!  All your questions will be answered, all the mysteries revealed!  What has obliterated humanity?  What the hell happened to the moon?  What is the true nature of the Hidden Jungle?  Why do the heroes you know and love—Turok, Magnus and Doctor Spektor—seem like completely different people?  And perhaps most importantly, how will the world be saved, and at what cost?



DOCTOR SPEKTOR PART 6: The story of the all-new master (and we use the term lightly) sorcerer continues... when Doc gets drunk & summons a demon – and good decision-making ensues!
Sovereigns #5
writers: Ray Fawkes (main),        Aubrey Sitterson (Doctor Spektor) artists: Johnny Desjardins (main),              Dylan Burnett (Doctor Spektor) covers: Stephen Segovia (A)               Johnny Desjardins (B)               Fred Hembeck (C)               Kenan Yarar (D)               Stephen Segovia (RI-B/W) FC  •  32 pages  •  $3.99  •  Teen +











REVIEW: 'Witchblade' #1 by Caitlin Kittredge, Roberta Ingranata, and Bryan Valenza

The next iteration of Witchblade has arrived and Top Cow has assembled another great creative team to bring the legendary wielder of the powerful artifact to life.


WITCHBLADE #1
Writer: Caitlin Kittredge Artist: Roberta Ingranata, Bryan Valenza Publisher: Image Comics Release Date: December 6, 2017 Cover Price: $3.99
Score: ★★★☆☆ (3/5)
Handed down from one worthy woman warrior to another for ions, the Witchblade gauntlet has chosen its next host in wartime journalist Alex Underwood. She suffers from PTSD and helps battered women find justice. The book opens with her bloodied and dying. The non-linear story jumps around from what led up to her situation, to helping an abused cop's wife, to having visions probably induced by the gauntlet. She rejects the growing power of the Witchblade it but that could kill her. 
The trouble with origin stories like this is the predictability of passing the torch to another chosen one. We know that Alex will eventually take to the Witchblade and use…

Fred Van Lente & CAFU Decode ARMSTRONG AND THE VAULT OF SPIRITS #1

Valiant announces ARMSTRONG AND THE VAULT OF SPIRITS #1 – a hard-charging, standalone special coming this winter from New York Times best-selling writer Fred Van Lente (ARCHER & ARMSTRONG, Incredible Hercules) and red-hot rising star CAFU (RAPTURE)! On February 7th, join in a riotous celebration for the ages as Armstrong, for the very first time, uncorks the ancient mysteries of his centuries past – and dares his closest comrades into the adventure of several lifetimes!

Deep beneath New York City’s seediest dive bar, Armstrong – the hard-hitting, harder-partying immortal veteran of history’s greatest escapades – is hosting an invitation-only affair for his most beloved friends and allies! Archer… Ivar, Timewalker… Faith… Quantum and Woody… And special guests from across the Valiant Universe… All have been offered a seat at the table for a personally guided tour of Armstrong’s most valuable and tightly guarded treasure… From the Great Flood to ancient Greece to the height of the C…

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 …