By: Frank Cho (Writer/Artist), Jason Keith (Colorist)
The Story: Wolverine gets stranded on a strange island that is part of the Savage Lands and meets Shanna the she-devil.
The Review: It is not common place these days to see an artist that can write a series on his own. Usually, it’s a combination of writer and artist, like Morrison and Quitely, or Ennis and Dilon, that creates great work as a team. We have seen people able to write and draw series by themselves, like Jeff Lemire with Sweet Tooth and Essex County, so could Frank Cho be the next discovery as the next big writer/artist under one of the Big Two?
Sadly, no. Frank Cho makes a good number of mistakes in this first issue that makes it very hard to enjoy its strong points. The very first of them is very simple: he writes too much. Close to every panel is accompanied with the various thoughts Wolverine has in his head, but the vast majority of those thoughts are completely useless, describing what Wolverine see in front of him. Considering that we can see easily what the character sees, those bits of text are pointless, bringing down the whole issue as if Frank Cho did not believe that his art could show all the necessary details by itself.
Another thing that went wrong was the setup, as close to nothing is explained or even teased in the first place. Wolverine just pops there and we have close to no indication, hints or even vague details about the whys and wherefores of his presence there. Sure, the series is supposed to be about the mystery of the island, but I got that from an interview I read, not from the actual first issue of the series itself. The premise of this island sounds more like something for a six-issue arc more than the premise of an entire ongoing. If the series fail to deliver a clear purpose right from the very start, it does not bode well for the rest.
What’s much better, though, is the art and the action. Wolverine fighting dinosaurs has a good sound to it, but it looks even better in the book. The character anatomy, the dynamics of the action and the various poses are all well done and are a treat to look at, as are the backgrounds and wildlife. His dinosaurs are very cool to look at, being savage, dangerous and fierce. If there is one thing upon which there was no doubt possible, it was the quality of Frank Cho’s art. Something to note would also be Jason Keith contribution to Frank Cho lines with his apt choice with the colorization. Every panel are really well-made, accentuated with the bright colors. Warm colors for a good chunk of the action and cold ones for the dialogue and discovery, enhancing the whole thing rather well with those color choices.
The Conclusion: A rather dull issue with some big missteps in the writing department that is helped a little bit with some good action and some terrific art.
Hugo Robberts Larivière