Written by: Matt Fraction, Pencils and colours by: Terry Dodson, Inks by: Rachel Dodson, Letters by: Clayton Cowles.
It’s Christmas Eve, back in the time when Adventureman (the team) was just being set up. A lone figure on horseback is chasing some criminals speeding off in a car down the street. The car is stopped by Adventureman, who looks at the figure: "You must be the Cross-Draw Kid," he exclaims.
In present day, Claire is still finding her footing when it comes to her powers by sleeping for three days straight. Claire and Reggie go to move some stuff from their Mum's old shop, when Reggie flakes, as she’s having a situation at the retirement home where all the residents have suddenly woken up and have energy. In the confusion of it all, an elderly man whispers to himself: "I remember."
It’s been a month since the conclusion of the first arc of the series. Now it’s time for a new arc to begin, and for the future of the Connell family to get going. I have to say this is a beautifully presented book. I had some concerns about the first arc, which have carried over into this one, but I cannot deny how stunning the art is on this title, as well as the overall presentation. We as the audience are given so much, it feels like they should be charging more for each issue. This one is 31 pages, packed with the great start to the second arc, and a 7-page afterword by Fraction that is insightful and heartfelt.
So in terms of the writing, the concern I had with the previous arc was about the overloading of characters. This is still the case, with at least 7 Adventureman, 5 villains, and 9 Connell family members. That was just the first issue, let alone the first arc, and now they introduce 2 more “‘main” characters. Fraction goes on to say in the afterword “In 5 issues I have about 25 characters and want to add 6 more... easy to write, hard for Terry to realise”. Now, while I admire his tenacity to try to handle this many characters, I don’t think any writer could. That’s the point, with so many, it’s difficult to give them enough time to be fleshed out. This is a problem for me, as I can’t relate to characters that I’m not given enough time with. I think Fraction even admits this in this sentence. Other than that, the writing is high class and true action-adventure, something that just feels so much fun, and also a call back to Pulp era books. This is perfectly balanced, and I cannot help but smile at each page, as we get to find out more about the lineage of the Adventureman line and how it’s tied to the Connells.
The artwork by the Dodsons on this book has blown me away since I first picked it up. I was in awe of how beautiful the settings and characters are both drawn and coloured. There are a few names that I would say are masters of their craft when it comes to artwork: John Romita Sr, John Cassaday, Tony Daniel, and I would say the Dodsons are up there too. The picture above is taken from the right half of a stunning double page spread. I couldn’t help but think of Action Comics #1 when I saw this, as Adventureman picking the car up was very reminiscent of that, with a contemporary spin with so much going on. I had a similar thought about the first interior panel shown above, as it reminded me of Amazing Fantasy #15, with Spider-Man carrying the crook through the skyline. This is exactly what this series represents, a beautiful homage to the classic era of comics from both story and art perspectives.
In the afterword, Fraction goes on to say how he’s lucky to do this with partners, a series that has endless possibilities. At that moment I felt the same way, that I’m very lucky to be able to see such stunning pieces of art through many issues of comics.
Adventureman issue 6 will be released from Image Comics on 27th October from your Local Comic Shop as well as comixology
Andrew Carr was blessed to grow up watching the animated series of Batman, X-Men, and his favorite, Spider-Man.This started his dive into the comics world, which resulted in meeting his amazing cosplaying wife Imogen. They live in England with their Sinister Six dogs.