One of the most prestigious writers in comic book-dom is back: John Byrne returns to comics with his new series from IDW, Triple Helix. Does Mr. Byrne still possess that magic that kept him so popular for so long? Is it good?
Triple Helix #1 (IDW)
Damn, can John Byrne can write a debut issue. Without any knowledge of any of these characters we are immediately plunged headfirst into a multi-layered, character filled conflict on several different fronts.
This is a very ambitious way to start a series. If the conflict gets too complicated (maybe we wouldn’t be able to understand who these characters are and what roles they play,) new readers can get turned off quickly. Fortunately, Mr. Byrne knows exactly what he’s doing so the conflict is easy enough to follow but still confusing and chaotic enough to create the right kind of hectic atmosphere. My only complaint here would be that we don’t really understand who/what Triple Helix is (three people as the name suggests or a whole group?) and it’s referenced quite often. But that is only a minor grievance.
One of the things I really loved about this comic was how old-school the dialogue sounded but wasn’t forced to the point of being hard to understand. All of the banter is in the Silver Age spirit but still flows nicely.
Although I really liked this issue, I don’t think it was particularly new or interesting as an overall piece of art. There isn’t really any inner meaning or message in this issue, just a battle and a misunderstanding. It didn’t ruin the experience for me, but I think there could have been more to this comic then there was.
And who could hate on Byrne’s art? No one. Although it isn’t the most modern or darkest or most photo-realistic, Mr. Byrne’s artwork is something to behold. I don’t think anyone quite nails facial expressions, proper body mechanics and postures, and realistic action so perfectly as Byrne. There is fun in his artwork yet it remains serious enough to carry the story well.
I am not really sure how this series will play out over 4 issues. I think this comic would have made a wonderful one-shot, but I just can’t even guess where he’s going to take the actual story. I do know I’m looking forward to what comes next, however.
- Fun, exciting opening
- Who doesn’t love Byrne’s art?
- Writing is overall pretty good
- Seems more like a one and done than a continuous story
Is it Good?
In my humble opinion, yes, quite. A nice mix of old-school spirit and exciting action makes for a pleasing opening issue.