Friday, January 10, 2014

Review - Justin Time vs. the Time Toads of Krylos 8

"Please. You've got to help me. They're coming for me."

Justin Time vs. the Time Toads of Krylos 8 sounds exactly what the title makes it sound like. Time traveling toads are chasing someone through time because they want him dead. The issue is written and illustrated by Derec Donovan.

Justin Time lived a peaceful life on Krylos. That is, until the Time Toads of made an appearance and subjugated Justin and his people. Of course, those who weren't conquered were just flat out shot, prompting Justin to make a hasty retreat. Turns out though that Time Toads are thorough, following him through a multitude of various eras in their desire to finish what they started.

The concept Donovan is working with is a very top-level look at time travel. He doesn't wasted any time ensuring that there are no paradoxes or anything, primarily because Justin Time vs. the Time Toads of Krylos 8 is just so short to begin with. It's only ten pages, meaning that Donovan gets right to the point in introducing the protagonist, antagonist, setting and obstacles for each to overcome. It moves exceptionally fast, really not giving the reader much time to catch their breath and take in what they're reading. Granted, were this more than a one-shot it's easy to see the series falling into an "era of the week" formula, but you have to wonder whether or not the characters would've been better served by more--ahem--time.

Donovan also handles the art, which looks like it's from a different era of comics itself. The two main characters look human in shape, but are decidedly not humans (what they actually are isn't really delved into that much). The toads are featured quite prominently and look about as terrifying as you would expect Time Toads to look. Donovan doesn't really stray too far from the tried and true rectangle panel layouts, but there is one page that features the characters running across a variety of backgrounds showing varying eras. There's a superhero flair to the characters in their illustrations as well, setting the tone for the book from the start.

Justin Time vs. the Time Toads of Krylos 8 is a pretty ambitious book that falls a little short because of its length. The characters never really get much of a chance to stand out or really even introduce themselves to the reader. The pacing works very well considering the subject matter of the book, but--again--why the Time Toads even invaded Krylos in the first place isn't explained. It makes some sense why they're chasing Justin Time, but that's really about the reader is given in order to make the book work. The art feels sufficiently cosmic and works for the overall tone of the book and readers looking for something quick to read that blends time travel and space could do worse than Justin Time vs. the Time Toads of Krylos 8.

Justin Time vs. the Time Toads of Krylos 8 is available now via Comixology.


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