Monday, May 26, 2014

Review - Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #1


"You will not remember that I forgot to leave the toilet seat down."

Having superpowers makes one special. Needed. Frustrated. All of the above. It's hard having powers; it's even harder having powers and a social life. There's supposed to be a happy medium between the two somewhere, but finding that medium is pretty hard. Especially when your powers revolve around mind manipulation, as in Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #1 from Dark Horse Comics. The issue is written by Fred Van Lente, illustrated by Freddie Williams II, colored by Jeremy Colwell and lettered by Nate Piekos of Blambot.

Agent Price’s new mission pits him against a doomsday cult leader with a political agenda that poses a direct threat to the president. But a mysterious hive mind has more menacing plans for Brain Boy. He’ll have no choice but to go head to head—brain to brain—with the mysterious Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. and all their intricacies.

Archer and Armstrong is one of the best books out there right now and part of that is due to Van Lente's writing style. It masks politics behind satirical hubris, as his style is extremely confident in its approach. He's no stranger to world-spanning cults fighting to subvert the greater establishment and in Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #1 he's got a hero who's somewhere between Archer and Armstrong in Brain Boy. That's not to say this book wouldn't work without referencing the other heroes; just that Van Lente clearly has a character and story type he sticks to. And he's really good at that type too, offering up a pretty heady tale that's got the right mix of humor and drama.

There's a lot to like about the art as well, with Williams II offering up a great looking book. the action is easy to follow and the characters all have their own unique look. There's a couple of pages where Brain Boy is accosted by multiple Utas and Williams II ensures that even they have their own unique looks. It's apparent that he took the time to do each one individually, giving the reader the sense of his commitment. Williams II showcases pretty solid understanding of human anatomy and facial expressions that also helps the reader feel engaged in the story.

Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #1 is an interesting book that throws Brain Boy in the thick of a lot of political intrigue. There are some rather interesting characters throughout the book, all of whom are being positioned to be part of something even bigger. The reader also gets a good look at the personal life of Brain Boy, something which will help humanize him more. Van Lente's style is very engaging and tongue in cheek, while at the same time presenting the groundwork for what will likely be an even bigger story. Williams II shines in the artwork department, offering a look that's very clean and a great fit for the story. Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #1 is a great book for new readers to jump in with.

Brain Boy: The Men from G.E.S.T.A.L.T. #1 is in stores now with interiors below.






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