Despite having a strong distaste for most comic book reviews, I seem to have no problem ignoring the hypocrisy and attempting to write them myself. As such, please consider any inadequacy you find in this article my personal form of protest.
It can be almost impossible to find a negative review online as the various websites and bloggers pander to the studios, authors, artists and creative teams they admire. I’ve read great reviews for some really bad books, and been unable to find negative reviews of some books I felt were horrible. With that said, the first review I was pointed towards for Evil Empire #1 was far from complimentary, which was a breath of fresh fucking air.
Unfortunately, in this case, I disagree.
I will admit that I am a little unclear as to what direction this book is going. There is an obvious (intentional?) disconnect between the different stories that are presented to the reader throughout the book. The first three pages are pretty much what you would expect from a book titled “Evil Empire”, but before you know it, you’re transported out of that world into a storyline involving a young and handsome male politician, a younger female singer, and a political campaign for the presidency of something/somewhere. As our two main characters proceed to fumble around the institution of courtship without the tried and true aid of eHarmony , we are presented with a separate plot, and a mysterious but seemingly disconnected crime leads into the climatic and surprising conclusion.
Not sold yet? You shouldn’t be… I just read that back to myself and it sounds fucking awful.
I am willing to admit that this book could go absolutely nowhere, and I will be left owing everyone who reads this a pint of beer at Duggan’s Boundary. However, here are some of the reasons I’m optimistic and willing to suggest you consider picking up a copy of this book.
- I’m going to consider the disconnect between the various storylines a matter of intrigue, and as such will continue reading just to see how everything comes together. Im really hoping everything does in fact tie together at some point and I can look back at this book and say… “hmmn, that sure tied together well”.
- I would really like to find out how the “evil empire” becomes a part of the story. Besides the opening three pages of the book, we haven’t exactly been hit over the head with any sort of an evil empire.
- The characters that are introduced are quite engaging, and while stereotypes might make the reader feel like they know who these characters already, I couldn’t help but feel an uneasy anticipation that there was more to these people that what we have seen thus far.
- The visual aesthetic of this book is worth paying the money for an extra copy (or one copy without my greasy fingerprints on it). The art in this book is absolutely stunning.
- I can’t give up on the book after the ending they drop on you in the final pages of issue #1. I’ll have no problem paying the $4.00 to see where Bemis and Getty and the gang take the book next issue.
I also have faith that there will be no more singing. If anyone made sense of those lyrics and could actually follow along in their head, please send me an audio track with the vocal track for that song. Personally, I would recommend skipping over the lyrics (my apologies to Mr. Bemis) in favor of enjoying the art on this spectacular two-page spread… our young female songstress leans a bit toward the anti-establishment side of things… I assume that’s all you need to take away from the text.
I’m excited and intrigued for the next issue of Evil Empire. As I have at least implied above, I’m optimistic that things will start to become clearer as we read further. Issue #1 was enjoyable even if things didn’t seem to tie together, in fact, that’s one of the things I found most engaging about the book.
I’m a little reluctant to classify this as a recommended buy after just one issue, but there is the potential for a nice payoff for those willing to take a chance.
As always, my reviews and suggestions are backed by my free beer guarantee. If I’m ever wrong here in the articles section of Graphic Novice, I invite you to meet me at my local pub and cash in a free pint.
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