Review - Fathom Vol. 4 #0

Aspen Matthews has been through the ringer on more than one occasion. Volume 1 of the series showed that Admiral Maylander knew of the Blue's presence while Volume 2 had him taking aim at said Blue. The Blue is significant in that Aspen is part Blue and also part Black, as her kidnapping by the latter introduces her to her father Rahger. The most recent volume 3 focused on the divide between the returning Killian and a new allegiance with his daughter Kiani. Which brings us to the present in Volume 4.

Aspen Comics is set to release Fathom Vol. 4 #0 on June 1 and Omnicomic has an advance review of the brief prologue to the next chapter in Aspen's life.

It's never a good sign when you wake up being analyzed by heavily suited men. She's inhibited by a collar that prevents her from being her true self, but the scientists do discover the capability of her lungs to breathe both water and air. Needless to say, she's not too keen about being a science project, prompting her escape from the facility.

The issue is very short and really does nothing else other than set Aspen up for Fathom Vol. 4 #1. There's a fight scene where Aspen shows off her chops before escaping and...that's about it. I can't really complain about it because it is a zero issue. It's designed to be a starting point for new readers and it does a good job of getting you up to speed on her abilities and plight.

Aspen is a strong female character and, despite spending the entire issue underwater and half naked, doesn't rely on her sex appeal to get by. Honestly, I would put Aspen in the same league as Wonder Woman and Witchblade. All three women are really powerful female characters that manage to fight for what they believe in without seeming vapid. She's clearly been through some stuff and is struggling to reclaim her identity and her place in the world. Her tale is of belonging as Aspen belongs to both the land and sea.

The zero issue is written by Scott Lobdell and features illustrations by Alex Konat (colors by Beth Sotelo and letters by Josh Reed). I'm fairly certain this is the team that will carry on when the series takes off and they work well together. Fathom Vol. 4 #0 boasts some really sharp art and concise writing. It's very explicit and really gets you back into the story and it's looking like a good story is being set up.

The issue hits stores June 1. Be sure to look for it in a few weeks.