Friday, May 9, 2014

Comic Review: Flash Gordon #1


Another belated comic book review folks. This time Flash is back and running for his life.

After a brief setup that introduces feisty reporter Dale Arden, clever scientist Hans Zarkov and party boy Flash Gordon, we pick up with them on the run from a couple of Ming ships. Using portals to zip around, the trio finds themselves on Frigia, an ocean world, a poison gas planet and eventually Aboria, where they become the unwelcome guests of Prince Barin and his men...at least until Dale comes up with a clever ruse.

Dynamite's last stab at Alex Raymond's space hero, Flash Gordon: Zeitgeist, was a mish mash of Raymond's original comic strips with elements pulled from the 1980 film. Here writer Jeff Parker instead uses the recent miniseries King's Watch as the launching point for this new series. Does it work? I'll give it credit for skipping the origin story and instead jumping into the action with breathless speed and fast paced humor, though not of the campy kind. While it's hard to get a lock on the characters, I figure the rest of the series will fill in the holes but for now Parker's done a nice job getting us started.

Helping is illustrator Evan Shaner, who brings a nice look to the series. From the character designs to the fast paced action sequences, Shaner brings flair and splashes of style to this take. It doesn't hold a candle to Raymond's work-but then what does-but it is still a good looking comic book with nice color and panache.

So Flash fans while we wait any further news on that new movie at least this will help pass the time and celebrate 80 years of Flash Gordon and company. Until next time, DEATH TO MING!

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