Indie Comics Round-up: Almighties Origins, ALV, The Fourth Planet, Of Stone

indie-round-upThis week’s indie comics round-up features: superhero origin tales in Almighties Origins; the new series from Close 2 Immortality ALV; The Fourth Planet; Of Stone.

Almighties Origins (Actuality Press)

AlmightiesAs you might guess from the title, Almighties Origins tells the tales of the Almighties, a group of superheroes from the minds of Sam Johnson and a large stable of other creators. This team gives us a book which stars a varied casts of characters whom we are introduced to through a collections of short stories, each one providing us some insight into a single member of the eponymous team. Unfortunately, we found this title a bit of a tough one to get into as the writing and art was terribly inconsistent from story to story, with some being much more interesting and better looking than others. As a result, along with a lack of any noteworthy scenes, we really struggle at loving this title, even with a funny little A-Team quote. So, all in all, not a great introduction to this book but as it is a zero issue which isn’t meant to start a story, it might be better to hold off judgement until we check out ‘issue 1’.
Download Almighties Origins for FREE from DriveThru Comics

ALV #1 (Close 2 Immortality)

ALV1The first issue from the Close 2 Immortality collective. ALV is the tale of Adele Leigh Voss, the world’s first and only superhuman. When not saving lives or stopping bad guys, she is using her superpowered status to obtain celebrity status, however, when something terrible (and unknown to us readers) happens, ALV finds herself blamed, on the run and in hiding as the world she was loved by now hates her and wants her stopped. For this first issue, we found ALV an interesting premise and one which doesn’t feel overdone in the world of superhero comics. Unfortunately we found the art, while unique at times, became rougher and more inconsistent as the issue progressed, which didn’t help immerse us in reading it. We also felt that the eponymous lead, while being written as a strong female character, ended up being being rather stereotypically portrayed (does a child genius with multiple degrees really need to be shown getting out of the shower over 3 pages?!) and this undermined what could have been a strong debut from the C2I group.
ALV will be available from the Close2 Immortality website

The Fourth Planet #1 (Chapterhouse Comics)

The Fourth PlanetFrom the publishers of Captain Canuck, comes The Fourth Planet a sci-fi series where a spaceship full of humans crashes on the titular fourth planet having escaped and liberated their vessel from their alien enslavers only to find a war between two factions threatens to drag the interstellar castaways right into the middle. We found the Fourth Planet to be a very intriguing title which shows a lot of promise to become a captivating story, despite our struggle to get fully engrossed due to its confusing, somewhat fractured plot. However, our love of Miko Maciaszek’s art (which has a very Dustin Nguyen on Descender like vibe), as well as the impressively depicted main characters we see step forward and the startings of intricate world building amongst the alien cultures are major plus points. We have to admit that, now the introduction is out of the way, this is a book which could become very captivating and will definitely have us coming back for more.
The Fourth Planet is available from Chapterhouse Comics

Of Stone #1 (D.A. Bishop)

Of StoneOf Stone #1 follows the journey of Gan, king of the ogres, as he hunts Vraithunde in the lands near his home. However, when he encounters two of them who are brothers and can speak (a feat he thought impossible) Gan begins to unravel events which may not only hurt him and his wife, but also all of his people. This first issue Of Stone was something of a mixed bag, with the story coming across as a very immersive, political tale in the vein of Game of Thrones or Lord of the Rings, however, it is a little confusing to begin with, and relies on a lot of panel based exposition to get the story across. Fortunately this improves as the story progresses and writer/aritst D. A. Bishop provides an impressive monologue of Gan throughout, allowing us to begin to connect with him and his world. The moody, natural art gives the book a strong sense of identity and Gan is a really unique looking character with his circle of shoulder piercings (although his lack of clothing means D.A. is constantly having to place shadows in certain places to avoid embarrassment!) This first issue very much feels like a one-off, and subsequent issues begin to develop the world of Gan and co even further.
Purchase Of Stone for £1.49 from ComiXology