The Adventures of Apocalypse Al #1 of 4
Writer: Straczynski, J. Michael
Artist: Kotian, Sid
Cover Artist: Kotian, Sid
On Sale Date: February 4, 2014
Publisher: Image Comics
In certain cases less is more. In the case of Apocalypse Al that is definitely the case. The story revolves around Allison Carter a paranormal investigator who specializes in end of the world scenarios. This comic gives an overwhelming amount of information especially in a first issue that left me wondering if some of the story couldn’t have been more fleshed out and some saved for the next issue. The story in this issue moves at a break neck pace that seems to be very rushed and makes it very hard for the reader to keep up with and digest. There’s a good story here under all the information, hopefully it will have slowed down by issue number two.
Sid Kotian’s art and panel layout is very expressive and his character models have a very clean line to them. The visual portions of this book seem to be held back by the decision not to rely on more visual storytelling in lieu of text boxes that describe a lot of the actions taking place. It seems that if given a bit more freedom Kotian could do so much more with the visuals. If anything is going to bring me back for the second issue it will be the art.
The writing in this book seems to be both a strength and a liability. Straczynski’s humor is laugh out loud funny, but the exposition heavy text boxes and over narration ultimately hurt the visual aspects of the storytelling. The characters are written in such a way that they are relatable and familiar, but with so much emphasis put on the inner monologue of the main character the flaws in the story are magnified and negate the humor and wonderful art. I hope this is not how the rest of the series will be written as it seems to highlight a lack of trust between the writer and artist.
The Adventures of Apocalypse Al seems to have a good comic buried under a lot of missed opportunities. The art is really good and I hope that in later issue the writing will follow.
I’m giving Apocalypse Al, 3 out of 5 Nerdskulls.
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