Tini Howard’s new book for Marvel Comics, Strikeforce Issue 1, was released this week. I have been looking forward to reading it because I need more Wiccan in my life. So, was it good? Well, as far as a premise dealing with superheroes and the supernatural goes, I think this story has a lot of promise.
While I enjoyed reading Strikeforce Issue 1, I don’t think I would’ve picked up a copy if Wiccan (Billy Kaplan) wasn’t in it. The story is engaging, but I would like to see where it goes in the upcoming issue or two to really decide if this new series is something I would recommend to everyone else. But for now, if you’re a fan of any of the characters on the current roster, go pick it up. Also, due to Wiccan and Angela, this series already has two openly queer characters as leads in the ensemble.
Howard does a lot to explain what’s going on in the debut issue without making the pace drag. So, for that, I give her points. I also give her points for writing enjoyable interactions between the characters who don’t usually hang out with each other. Even though they are superheroes (and members of various teams), they are basically strangers to each other and that’s what gives Howard a whole lot to play with as far as possible interactions go.
Without spoiling too much, the main threat deals with what is described (in the story) as “a virus of thought.” The more people know about it, the more it spreads. Considering what happens in the opening pages of this comic book, it makes sense why Blade forms the current team.
The note from Howard at the end of this comic book states that this story features the horror linked to trust. How willing would you be to trust someone when you can’t know what’s real or not?
German Peralta’s art does an awesome job of bringing Howard’s script to life. I liked the character designs and the dynamic feel during the action sequences. The color’s by Jordie Bellaire do a good job of setting the visual tone. It is a colorful book, but everything felt muted to me to gel well with the horror aspect of the story.
As mentioned, Strikeforce Issue 1 does show a lot of potential and I think fans of the featured characters will enjoy it. I’m personally liking what Howard’s doing with Wiccan’s powers over in Death’s Head. So, I look forward to seeing where she takes Billy in the current series. There’s clearly a difference between warping reality (based on physics) and trying to wrap something that’s supernatural in nature. I’m here for Howard exploring how the supernatural works in the Marvel Comics Universe and the relationship it shares with individuals who wish to control it.
Also, while I was worried Howard might introduce forced drama between Wiccan and Hulkling, I’m happy to share the two are still engaged in Strikeforce. I don’t know how Hulkling feels about Wiccan being part of such a team, but as long as their Universe-saving love for each other exists, I think it will all work out in the end.
Have you read Strikeforce Issue 1? Feel free to share your thoughts with us.
Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.
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