Review By David Ferguson

Art by Robert Carey, Cormac Hughes and Luca Pizzari
Written by Stephen Carey, Ciarán Marcantonio, Luca Pizzari and Darrin O’Toole
Colours by Peter Mason, Darren Brown, Dee Cunniffe and Robert Carey
Colour assists by Louisa Baeta
Lettering by Miriam Abuin
Cover by Robert Carey

As with the previous issue, I’m going to do my review story by story. However, I’d like to start by saying that this is a very good looking book and the artists have done their job in creating something that draws the reader in. I also think it was smart to bring known creators like Darrin O’Toole in as he brings his own fan base. The issue goes on sale at DICE.

As this is an advanced review, I’m not going too much into the plot details.

Reality Watch

Art by Robert Carey
Written by Stephen Carey
Colours by Peter Mason
Lettering by Miriam Abuin

I am writing this as a person who hasn’t read parts one and two (yet). It’s an interesting sci-fi concept about a group of guys who keep a watch out for glitches in reality. The addition of some action is action avoids the possible pitfall of it being all concept and no plot. You get some insight into the main character’s motivations and character but I’d like to see some more and the concept so I am hoping that we see more. What I found very interesting (and a definite plus) is that I wasn’t lost having not read the previous parts. Would have liked to seen someone or something behind the threat in the story.

A Clockwork Universe

Art by Cormac Hughes
Written by Ciarán Marcantonio
Colours by Darren Brown
Lettering by Miriam Abuin

I wasn’t always sold on Cormac Hughes art (I’m more a fan of stuff on the realistic end of the art spectrum). However, I’ve begun a fan recently especially as he’s had a chance to do a bit more in this issue (more on that later). What he certainly does do is design great characters. I liked what he did with the gunshot on page 5. Clever. It’s an action adventure sci-fi story and there is plenty of action on show here. One of the things I think is necessary in a multi part story like this is story progression each issue. The story certainly moves along and also has an ominous hint to the future which is something I enjoy. Comics need cliffhangers. The only note of criticism is the placement of captions especially on the first page. It is a pet peeve of mine when characters are obscured by them.

The Box

Art, writing, lettering and colours by Luca Pizzari
Colour assists by Louisa Baeta

It is well known Luca Pizzari is a great artist (see Glimmer Man as an example). What you find from this story is that he has equal skills in the writing department. The story is reminiscent of something you might get from the likes of Grant Morrison and Jonathan Hickman. High concept stuff but grounded by a story that is about the coming of age of the main character. As you might assume, it is a beautiful looking and coloured story. A real standout for me.

Red Lotus

Art by Cormac Hughes
Written by Darrin O’Toole
Colours by Dee Cunniffe
Lettering by Miriam Abuin

Darrin O’Toole has created many great sci-fi stories in the past and this is another one. It is interesting to see him work with Lightning Strike stalwart Cormac Hughes. He has certainly written to his strengths. For example, I think Cormac draws some great technology and some beautiful looking women and the story is, at a basic level, a beautiful woman versus some robots (there’s an entertaining idea to go along with it). He also gets a chance to show his design skills with the lotus motif. With Dee Cunniffe on colours and Miriam Abuin lettering, you get that extra polish. Great done in one story.

There’s Always A Catch

Art and colours by Robert Carey
Written and lettered by Stephen Carey

It’s interesting to have the same writer/artist team doing another story. Interesting as it is a very different kind of story. The previous story was very sci-fi with an action element whereas this is very much action with a sci-fi element. The story really suits Robert Carey as he really gets to show off his skills. I’m wondering where they are going to go with the story as I am not quite sure what this is yet. That’s not a criticism as they do enough in this part as it regards setting things up. Has a cliffhanger too which always adds point to me.