Hanna Barbara continues to deliver some imaginative comics with their recent reboot, and Future QuestFuture Quest #2 (DC Comics)
The official DC Comics synopsis reads:
Still reeling from their encounter with the ghost from outer space, Jonny and Hadji reach the wreckage of the vessel that burst through the vortex. The ship’s sole survivor doesn’t remember what she was fleeing, or even her own name…but she does know her pet is called Blip. Plus: journey to Earth’s past, 45,000 years ago—and witness the birth of the world’s first fantastic hero: Mightor!
Why does this book matter?
This series combines multiple characters and heroes, making it one of the most adventurous and bombastic crossovers in recent memory. The fact that it works–in a pulp fiction sort of way–is a testament to the creators.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Love those eyes.
This issue opens with our heroes fighting a monster so huge they split up to take the tail and head ends separately. I’m not even sure that’s ever happened in a comic book and it quickly reminds us we’re dealing with a threat that’s nearly incomprehensible. Writer Jeff Parker keeps the action fast and furious with lots of easy to follow banter. Space Ghost is downright awesome too and I often wondered why this wasn’t a Saturday morning cartoon when I was growing up.
The story also melds Johnny Quest and his friends to Space Ghost quite well and transitions to a different type of action in the second half. The second half of the issue focuses on Quest and his family and friends and their battling the somewhat moronic goons of the bad guys. We’re introduced to new characters, Birdman, and other nostalgic characters along the way too. Again, it’s a lot of action and heroes screaming to do this, or go that way, but it works because of the adventure aspect of the characters.
The art by Evan “Doc” Shaner suits this story as it has a simple style that’s mostly mid shots to fit all the characters. The opening monster fight sequence does just enough to keep it understandable and clear and the monster itself is just disturbing enough to remind us the heroes are dealing with a space entity that needs vanquishing. Space Ghost is clean and heroic–I particularly like how Shaner draws the eyes–and Johnny Quest is just the right size and age to be believable. Believe me, it’s tough drawing younger characters!
It can’t be perfect can it?
If you like your action chaotic and all over the map you’ll enjoy this, but it doesn’t necessarily feel like the plot is progressing all that much. That gives this a younger audience feel, since characters whoosh in in the nick of time too often and much of the dialogue is focused on escaping every twist and turn. That gives this a classic comic strip sort of feel which isn’t bad, but isn’t in the same vein of modern comics either.
Is It Good?
You may not do better in searching for a rollicking adventure with so many damn characters and wild action. It has an old school feel for sure that’ll bring you back to the times when comic strips were king.
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