Image Comics/Mad Ghost 2021
Written by Geoff Johns
Illustrated by Gary Frank
Coloured by Brad Anderson
Lettered by Rob Leigh
Set in the years after a nuclear war ravaged the planet, desperate outlaws battle for survival in a world of radioactive chaos. Out past the poisoned wasteland lives a man even the Nightcrawlers and Organ People fear. Some name him Joe Glow, others call him the Meltdown Man. But his name…is Geiger.
Now this is the Geoff Johns I could read every day of the week. You can see and feel how much passion and zeal he has for this project and without corporate mandates or limitations placed in what he can and cannot do. This issue starts on the opening page and doesn’t let up for one single moment and while Geoff manages to create the highs and lows so that it has a very distinctive feel to it. The idea and how the concept comes to life pulled me and made me want to see and know more and when this issue ended i was genuinely sad because at that point I was so invested and engaged in the book that it left a void that you want filled.
I love the way that this is being told. How the story & plot development we see through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is presented exceptionally well. As origins go this one is great provided its more than a story being told by one man to another. The character development that we see is amazing and as we see the dialogue that goes along with the way we see them act and react to the situations and circumstances they encounter really do flesh them out as viable people. The pacing is superb and as it takes us through the pages revealing this world, introducing these characters and giving more information regarding the story it’s easy to get swept up in what we see.
The way that this is structured and how the layers within the story are emerging we see gaps that we want to be filled in. So until something like that happens it’s the readers’ mind that fills them in and thus engaging them and making them a part of the story. The way we see everything working together to create the story’s ebb & flow we also see how it moves everything ever forward.
I have never seen this kind of work from Frank before. It doesn’t have what I’ve come to think of as his signature style, sure it has some elements but this is the best work i’ve ever seen him do and considering his portfolio that’s saying a lot! The linework that we see is utterly sensational and with the varying weights and techniques being utilised to create this level and quality of detail that we see in the work leaves me flabbergasted. To see the backgrounds utilised as we do so they become a character within the story adding a whole nother dimension to what we see is brilliantly rendered. It not only enhances the moments but the depth perception, sense of scale and the overall sense of size and scope to the story we see is stupendous work. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show a masters eye for storytelling. Also i’m hella impressed with the creativity and imagination that we see within these pages as well. The colour work is divine and how we see the various hues and tones within the colours being utilised to create the shading, highlights and shadow work shows us an amazing eye for how colour works. How we see colour utilised to create depth in the imagery, how it can create musculature or add dimension to inanimate objects is stellar stuff.
The hype surrounding this before it even hit stands and how it sold out and has already gone to a second printing doesn't even begin to do it justice. This is some of the most creative, unique and brilliantly rendered storytelling from all involved, including how we see the lettering throughout as well.