Tuesday, November 13, 2007

REVIEW :: The Order 1-4

by Matt Fraction and Barry Kitson
reviewed by Daniel Von Egidy

If you put together a stack of under looked books in mainstream comics, The Order would be near the top. Matt Fraction and Barry Kitson’s The Order breaks through post-Civil War Marvel with old-school super heroics and compelling new characters. But selling fans on all-new characters is a tough sell these days, it took a long time for Runaways to catch on and I’m hoping The Order gets that same chance.

The book works around a simple framing device. The various plots of the book unfurl while reflecting the feelings and past of that issue’s focus character which is revealed in flashback interviews conducted before that character joined the team. When the book was announced I--and probably a lot of people--thought it was a mix of Strikeforce: Morituri and X-Statix. It sets itself apart by not being nearly fatalistic as the former or as cynical as the latter. These people want to be superheroes to help people, not for fame and fortune (which several characters already have).

It’s the little things that really make this book shine though. Jet-powered Communist bears, Zombie Hobos (Zobos!), and The Man from S.H.A.D.O.W.: an amalgam of all your favorite government conspiracies. And Barry Kitson just draws the wholly living heck out of all of it. He’s a team book artist on par with George Perez and Alan Davis and should be reason enough to give the book a look. A book with many rewards and should definitely be on everyone’s radar.


Daniel Von Egidy said...

Good review. I'm gonna buy that writer of truth a fine fat goose at the market for his goodly wife.

Cooper said...

Okay, so I'm reading THE ORDER, and this is my take so far:

1) I feel a bit like I'm reading CASSANOVA LITE.

2) I wish it were called CHAMPIONS (and why didn't that controversy get more people to check it out?)

3) I'm confused as to why nobody seemed to market the fact that an old-school IRON MAN cast member plays an integral part in the series. Or maybe I just missed it being mentioned. It was a surprise to me, but had I known I think it would have made me more readily check the book out (and yes, I'm being vague in case people want to check it out for themselves).

Jason Wheatley said...

Sweet: The Order.

Not sweet: Complimenting your own reviews.