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'Eight Billion Genies' #1 is highly engaging
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Comic Books

‘Eight Billion Genies’ #1 is highly engaging

‘Eight Billion Genies’ has a hugely impactful premise you won’t want to miss.

Eight Billion Genies is certainly unlike any other comic you’ll read this week, maybe even this year. Written by Charles Soule with art by Ryan Browne, the first issue is out this week with a crackerjack idea.

Unconventionally, Eight Billion Genies takes nearly half of its length to get to its hook. Those pages set up a bunch of characters all revolving around a bar. Some are familiar with the bar, like the bar owner and a boy whose father is a regular. Others mistakenly arrive at the bar by accident. These characters vary in type and background and are quickly introduced in a believable way. Soule does a fantastic job establishing these different personalities so quickly.

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If you’re impatient, you might be dying to know what it’s all about, though. I found myself wondering why we should care about these people, although I must say the bartender is fascinating. Soule and Browne establish he’s sharp in understanding the people around him and how acts to move things along. He also speaks Mandarin and seems to have a robust background worth exploring.

'Eight Billion Genies' #1 review

Much of this story takes place here.
Credit: Image

Just as you’re ruminating on the bartender, the premise of the series is revealed: as the title suggests, every human on Earth gets a genie. All eight billion of them. I’ll refrain from details beyond that, but it’s the kind of idea that’s akin to asking friends late at night at a sleepover what their three wishes would be. The last half of the issue plays it fast and loose when it comes to these genies and the response from the people Soule has established. Some make wishes, others don’t, while others still are just trying to figure out what is going on. That first half paired with the fantastical premise of the series ends up showing how we’ve got a robust and well-written cast worth exploring this adventure with.

Browne does a great job with the art, establishing these very different people in a visual way. The sketchy pencil style gives environments and backgrounds. The world looks lived in and believable. That establishes things well before the genies show up, who are straight out of a cartoon. They look fun and fancy-free, which contrasts well with the realistic, almost drab surroundings. Extra props to the cosmos that appear inside the genies. When wishes are starting to reveal themselves, there’s an epic double-page splash that features quite a lot of outrageous wishes.

Eight Billion Genies #1 is a great start to a series that understands how to hook the reader. The series smartly opens with grounded, realistic characters so when the supernatural elements kick off it’s even more fantastical. Eight Billion Genies is never less than engaging, with strong characters to be absorbed in before the supernatural elements kick it all into another gear.

'Eight Billion Genies' #1 is highly engaging
‘Eight Billion Genies’ #1 is highly engaging
Eight Billion Genies #1
Eight Billion Genies #1 is a great start to a series that understands how to hook the reader. The series smartly opens with grounded, realistic characters so when the supernatural elements kick off it's even more fantastical. Eight Billion Genies is never less than engaging, with strong characters to be absorbed in before the supernatural elements kick it all into another gear.
Reader Rating1 Votes
8.7
Good character work to start the issue
Quite a great twist that will hook you
Great art that's detailed and sketchy juxtaposed well with the clean cartoon genies
Takes some patience to get through the first half
9
Great
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