Brian Wood

Rebels 2 (May 2015)

Rebels #2Do you know why superheroes wear flashy outfits? So you can tell them apart in otherwise confusing action sequences. Rebels has no superheroes, just the heroic men of the pre-Revolutionary War militias fighting against the British. Wood picks an interesting topic–much like WWII, it’d be hard to find an anti-Revolutionary War sentiment in readers.

But Wood doesn’t have any of the minutiae down. I’m not getting a history lesson with each issue, I’m getting a soap opera. It’s not even an interesting soap opera. Guy is determined and dense and disregards his wife’s feelings.

And Wood’s lack of thoughtfulness–the wife asking what time it is when they don’t have a clock–is kind of the problem with the whole thing. To mix film metaphor, it’s The Patriot, but pretending to be Dances With Wolves.

But, if it weren’t for the weak ending, it’d be fine enough.

CREDITS

A Well-Regulated Militia, Part Two; writer, Brian Wood; artist, Andrea Mutti; colorist, Jordie Bellaire; letterer, Jared K. Fletcher; editors, Spencer Cushing and Sierra Hahn; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Rebels 1 (April 2015)

Rebels #1I’m not sure a Revolutionary War epic is a thing. Not anymore, anyway. Certainly not in comics. But no one told Brian Wood because he’s trying to make a Revolutionary War epic with Rebels.

And there’s only one odd “tea party” reference. Otherwise, there’s nary a wink to be found in the comic. Given artist Andrea Mutti’s occasionally static figures, Rebels almost feels like one has found him or herself back in a Classics Illustrated.

As for the story, it’s okay. Wood labels the time transitions but doesn’t really make them matter to the reader until it’s too late. He’s in good company (“Downton Abbey” did the same thing). There are some father-son issues, some really strange future tense narration (Wood’s giving historical fiction texture but he’s also making his narrator weepy without context).

The comic goes out too tepidly. But it’s still successful. For a Revolutionary War epic.

CREDITS

A Well-Regulated Militia, Part One; writer, Brian Wood; artist, Andrea Mutti; colorist, Jordie Bellaire; letterer, Jared K. Fletcher; editors, Spencer Cushing and Sierra Hahn; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Star Wars 1 (January 2013)

889860During the first scene, with Luke Skywalker whining, I thought Brian Wood had figured a good way to do Star Wars. It’s a concept book–the comic is just a sequel to the original movie and avoiding the things fans have seen or read since. In other words, it’s the original Marvel Star Wars comic.

It’s also lame.

Luke’s not the worst characterization though. Wood saves that honor for Princess Leia. It’s impossible to imagine Carrie Fisher saying any of the lines. Han Solo’s weak too, but nowhere near as bad as Leia.

The comic might at least move if it weren’t for Wood’s exposition rectangles. He explains not just character’s emotions and motivations, but recounts scenes he’s just shown.

Carlos D’Anda’s art feels vaguely cartoon and manga influenced; neither seem appropriate.

It’s not a terrible comic, just a pointless one without any redeeming moments.

Inane’s probably the appropriate word.

CREDITS

In the Shadow of Yavin, Part One of Three; writer, Brian Wood; artist, Carlos D’Anda; colorist, Gabe Eltaeb; letterer, Michael Heisler; editors, Freddye Lins and Randy Stradley; publisher, Dark Horse Comics.

Scroll to Top