By Rick Remender (writer), Michael Penick (artist), Kevin Cross (colors)

The Story: The Corps! is touted as the elite team of mercenaries that governments won’t hesitate to hire to maintain any sort of deniability. This special preview issue offers eight pages of story and other bonuses like concepts, sketches, and plot elements. All together you’re getting about 24 pages of book (including advertisements) for $0.99.

As for the story, Dusk and her team of operatives are hired to rescue a mayor in Brazil who’ve been captured by one of the ruling drug cartels. However, all is not what it seems and soon our beautiful heroine is faced with a deadly situation when she’s confronted by betrayal from within.

What’s Good: At $0.99 there’s hardly room to complain. Even though we only get eight pages of story, the production values are good and the bonus materials shed some good insight as to how this series is being created. The story twist at the end is unexpected and left me wondering how things could go so badly (for Dusk) so quickly.

This is easily one of the better drawn books at Devil’s Due. Saying Michael Penick’s art is heavily influenced by Steve McNiven is an understatement. Smoke trails, hair, facial expressions – it’s all very similar.  He and colorist Kevin Cross work hard to emulate McNiven and Morry Hollowell’s visual style and almost nail it.  Penick reminds me of how Travis Charest used to ape Jim Lee before finding his own style.

What’s Not So Good: The concept is pretty generic and anyone who reads the pitch on the opening page will be instantly turned off. It doesn’t help that the book has an unremarkable name.

Conclusion: Rick Remender’s name may be the only reason why people continue to buy this book. Because as far as preview/teaser issues go, the story here is slightly above average at best. Were this book written by anyone else I highly doubt people would give this book a second chance. That said, Remender’s good track record will keep me around to see what transpires.

Grade: B-

– J. Montes