Skip to main content

REVIEW: 'Catalyst Prime Superb' #3, by David Walker, Sheena C. Howard, Ray-Anthony Height, and Alitha Martinez

I'm just going to say it, Catalyst Prime Superb is simply superb. My first introduction into the superhero imprint of Lion Forge is a thrilling series that is smart, exciting, and very character driven. It's what comic book fans crave, a well-thought-out adventure with heroes you can root for.


CATALYST PRIME SUPERB #3

(W) David Walker, Sheena C. Howard
(A) Alitha Martinez
(A/CA) Ray-Anthony Height
In Shops: Sep 20, 2017
LION FORGE
SRP: $3.99

Score: ★★★★☆ (4/5)

Ever since a cosmic event gave birth to a new age of superheroes of Catalyst Prime's universe, the people of Youngstown, Ohio have been on edge. Enhanced people have emerged mostly developing in young people and one teen who hadn't learned to control his power caused a deadly explosion at the high school. The Foresight Corporation has been entrusted to contain enhanced individuals and detect them wherever they may be. Its latest detection and capture of a high school student has drawn the attention of costumed vigilante Cosmosis and he's broken into Foresight to rescue her.

If it sounds like a lot has happened in three issues you'd be right. It's a fast-paced story but doesn't feel rushed. There's a lot of world-building to do. I haven't even mentioned that Cosmosis is actually teenager Jonah who based his superhero alter-ego on a comic book character of the same name and narrowly escaped Foresight after his failed rescue attempt. He's now on the run with help from his best friend, Kayla, who returned to town because her parents work at the potentially nefarious Foresight. With the technological enhancements from his other friend, the tech genius Abbie, Jonah is capable of some amazing heroics including power blasts from his goggles. David Walker and Sheena C. Howard delivers an exhilarating superhero comic that is as interested in their characters as the action itself.

It's hard not to mention that both Jonah and Kayla represent the inclusion that Lion Forge promised with their comic line. Jonah has down syndrome. He's probably the first to be a leading character in a comic, much less a superhero comic. He's portrayed respectfully as a confident heroic figure full of agency. He may be bullied as Jonah but as Cosmosis he's an unstoppable force for good. 


Kayla is one of a growing trend of African-American girls leading a comic book series joining Marvel's RiRi Williams (Invincible Iron Man), Lunella Lafayette (Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur), and Top Cow's Destiny Ajaye (Genius: Cartel). Kayla's in disbelief to see Jonah risk his life as a costumed hero infiltrating Foresight and she's reluctant to help him return there to save their classmate. Even after meeting his "crime-fighting partner," Abbie who makes gadgets, Kayla is too protective of Jonah to participate. It's a complicated relationship that shapes the dynamics of their friendship amid a perilous rescue mission. 

The art team of Ray-Anthony Height, Alitha Martinez, Veronica Gandini, and Sotocolor
create an exciting series of dynamic pages that keep the pace moving without rushing the more emotional sequences. The colors are rich and deep illuminating many of the detailed backgrounds. They ratchet up the tension as the search for Cosmosis goes door-to-door in Jonah's neighborhood and the many cues to his backstory. The art tells the story as much as the words. 

'Superb' is as good as any mainstream superhero comic if not more so. It's the inclusive world we've been promised that so far Catalyst Prime has delivered. 'Superb' takes familiar hero tropes and really examines them and their consequences through new characters. Issue three is make-or-break for any comic and 'Superb' makes it with flying colors. It's one of the most satisfying and exciting comics you can buy. 

Buy Me a Coffee at ko-fi.com



Comments

Popular posts from this blog

REVIEW: 'Cyber Force' #1 by Matt Hawkins, Bryan Hill, and Atilio Rojo

Cyber Force is back! A reimagining from Matt Hawkins and Bryan Hill introduce a new beginning for the classic series.


CYBER FORCE #1
Writer: Matt Hawkins, Bryan Hill Artist: Atilio Rojo
Letterer: Troy Peteri Publisher: Image Comics Release Date: March 28, 2018 Cover Price: $3.99
Score: ★★★★☆ (4/5)
You don't have to be familiar with the original series to enjoy this new iteration. In fact, 'Cyber Force' #1 is your prototypical origin story where the players are introduced including a devastatingly lethal villain.  It opens with said villain striking a huge terrorist strike brought vividly to life by Atilio Rojo. Humanity has become too dependent on technology and this act of terrorism is supposed to be the first wave of resistance, a preventive measure to keep humans from destroying themselves. In the aftermath of the attack of one of the world's biggest technology companies, one man survives, Morgan Stryker, maimed and severely wounded, unknowingly undergoes a transform…

REVIEW: 'Slots' #1 by Dan Panosian

Created, written, and drawn by Dan Panosian, 'Slots' #1 is his baby and he has a story to tell at his own damn pace. This beautifully illustrated story is centered squarely on former boxer Stanley Dance and his attempt to find redemption despite being someone without many redeeming qualities.


SLOTS #1 
Writer: Dan Panosian Artist: Dan Panosian Publisher: Image Comics Release Date: October 4, 2017 Cover Price: $3.99
Score: ★★★★☆ (4/5)
'Slots' is more of a character study than a rip-roaring crime caper but Panosian's protagonist is a charming cad, full of confidence, capable of swindling you out of a restaurant bill with a devilish grin on his face. He's headed back to Vegas to fulfill a favor he owes. He returns to his old haunts where everyone knows him and knows he must be playing some kind of angle. 'Slots' succeeds because Stanley is so magnetic even when he's a jerk he's interesting. So following him around town meeting up with old friends is…

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…

PREVIEW: 'The Shadow / Batman' HC by Steve Orlando and Giovanni Timpano

The World’s Greatest Mystery. The World’s Greatest Detective. They can barely stand each other, so how will they possibly deal with the World’s Greatest Evil? What legacy can two of the world’s most enduring icons of justice leave once they discover an ancient evil has been living inside the world they protect for centuries? Can Batman and the Shadow save the world without destroying it in the process?


Writer Steve Orlando (Batman/The Shadow, Justice League of America) and artist by Giovanni Timpano (The Shadow, Transformers) unite to tell an instantly classic tale of noir, mortality and generational heroes and villains.
The Shadow / Batman HC
writer: Steve Orlando artist: Giovanni Timpano cover: Alex Ross

In Stores 04/25/2018
FC  |  160 pages  |  $24.99  |   Teen +
COLLECTING ISSUES 1-6 + BONUS CONTENT













PREVIEW: 'John Wick' #2 by Greg Pak and Giovanni Valleta

John Wick's origin story continues! In the underworld of El Paso, Texas, a familiar face introduces an ex-con named John Wick to the local branch of the mysterious Continental Hotel, a neutral zone where professional killers spend their downtime. But can John adhere to the rules of the Continental? Or will his search for vengeance destroy his chances for a peaceful life? Also... does John Wick actually have...a cat?


John Wick #2

writer: Greg Pak
artist: Giovanni Valleta
cover: Giovanni Valleta (A)
            Jock (B)
            Photo cover (C)

In Stores 04/18/2018

FC  |  32 pages  |  $3.99  |   Teen +