Monday, December 25, 2017

Review - Quantum and Woody #1 (@ValiantComics)


"...you gotta roll the dice."

There are a few things that make a duo dynamic. Trust in one another, a reputation for heroics and an affinity for goats. Not just any goats, but goats imbued with the consciousness of the heroes' father. Sounds fun? Strap in for Quantum and Woody #1 from Valiant Comics. The issue is written by Daniel Kibblesmith, illustrated by Kano and lettered by Dave Sharpe.

Sometimes…you embrace your destiny. And sometimes…you and your trouble-making adopted brother find yourselves trapped in a scientific lab explosion that grants you $@&%ing awesome super-powers. As a result of their accident, Eric and Woody Henderson – aka Quantum and Woody – must “klang” their wristbands together every 24 hours or both dissipate into nothingness. Which makes superhero-ing pretty awkward when you’re not on speaking terms at the moment. See, Eric has been keeping a pretty big secret: He knows who Woody’s birth father really is…and where he’s been hiding all these years. nWith great power comes great sibling rivalry! This winter, you’ll believe two men and one goat can split a one-bedroom apartment and still be a credible threat to evil and injustice everywhere when QUANTUM AND WOODY make headlines and take names!

The duo of Quantum and Woody have always thrived on the entropy shared by the two main characters--something that Kibblesmith clearly understands. Kibblesmith gets that their relationship is complicated and he jams the issue full of that dysfunction in a way that still manages to feel fresh and exciting. His approach to the humor is phenomenal and the impact of his dialogue for the exchanges between the characters cannot be understated. What's even better is that despite the issue being well into their history as comic book characters, Kibblesmieth still manages to find time to get new readers up to speed with their past without the issue feeling like it's overbearing. The trip through time allows Kibblesmith the opportunity to put his stamp on the characters and work in all manner of humor that feels both appropriate and outlandish at the same time.

Kano's work on the art is extremely well=done as it presents the titular characters in a way that's seemingly more mature. The linework is heavy and thick, with Kano emphasizing the personalities of the two characters through their facial expressions and body language. The book definitely has an abundance of action throughout the issue and Kano keeps up with an equally frenetic panel layout rife with insets, overlays and panel layouts that are just plain fun. Kano is having a lot of fun with the artwork and there are a couple of pages in particular where he takes a full-page and breaks into smaller panels as a way of splitting the perspective between the two characters. The colors also do a great job of framing the world the brothers live in as a mix of neon nightclubs, fall suburban days and brightly clothed characters.

Quantum and Woody #1 is a blast, maintaining the status quo of the main characters without missing a beat. Quantum and Woody are no strangers to cleaning up messes, many of which are caused by the Woody because of his reckless and brash approach to life. Kibblesmith probably had as much fun writing the characters as the reader will have reading them which is a testament to the love he poured into the script. Kano's illustrations are a perfect match for the wrecking ball approach Quantum and Woody often find themselves having to resort to in order to survive the day. Quantum and Woody #1 is a return to characters that just feels right, as well as offering new readers a blunt slap to the face.

Quantum and Woody #1 is available now.


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