Friday, April 10, 2015

Review - The Four Points #1

"In recent years, these unexplained phenomena became more prevalent. Worse, more malevolent."

A new evil requires a new approach. That approach may require new teammates, which is part of the beauty of a team-up comic. Aspen Comics wants to offer up a new team-up series in The Four Points #1. The issue is written by Scott Lobdell, penciled by Jordan Gunderson, inked by John Ercek and Mark Roslan, colored by Valentina Pinto and lettered by Josh Reed.

Throughout history, oddities have remained hidden away within the fabric of societies across the planet. However, in recent years these unexplained phenomena have begun to emerge with a vengeance…enter Gia Sorentino. They thought she was crazy, and locked her away from the rest of the world. Yet, following a family tragedy, she has inherited an empire—-and with it, the keys to unlocking some of the most unimaginable secrets of mankind. Together, with three other women who possess abilities of inhuman nature, Sorentino embarks on a journey to discover the full potential of their collective powers. But, along with the amazing comes the sinister, and some things that should have remained hidden--including those that can threaten not only their existence, but the rest of the world as well!

The Four Points is--first and foremost--a team-up coming, with The Four Points #1 setting the table for those members to come together. Lobdell's introductions to each member is simple enough and does a good job effectively capturing their talents. He even blends them together in a way that feels natural, rallying their abilities around the mysterious appearance of massacres all over the world that leave behind a notable image. In that regard, The Four Points #1 is pretty effective at presenting the key players and giving them an objective. And even though the story globetrots, Lobdell manage to make it all feel cohesive, traveling to these new locales in a way that maintains a sense of order.

The sharp linework of Gunderson accents each character well, showcasing facial expressions replete with sharp angles contrasting with more rounded features. Each of the four main players have distinct characteristics that afford the reader the chance to clearly keep up with all the action. Those features are accented further by the inks of Ercek and Roslan, both of whom rely on dark lines and heavy shading on the characters and settings. Pinto's colors feel on the darker side, making even daylight scenes feel much more impactful. The pages are stacked with an assortment of panel layouts and designs, with a couple of full-page and two-page spreads peppered throughout.

The Four Points #1 is a pretty solid set-up issue. It pretty much does what it needs to do in order to get the series in the right direction, showcasing the lead characters and revealing most of the stakes. Lobdell's story is simple enough and doesn't trip over itself trying to be anything elaborate; instead, the simplicity of the presentation makes the book a pretty quick read. The art team does a great job, demonstrating that things will likely get a lot more gruesome as the series progresses and the characters learn more about their roles and the incidents. The Four Points #1 is a team-up book from a publisher that doesn't do a lot of them, but this one seems to be off on the right foot.

The Four Points #1 is in stores now.


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