Maximus Blade #1. w. Chris Warren a. Ken Lavin Chris Warren Media. $4.99
The first issue of a comic book, especially from an independent publisher, can be a very exciting thing and Maximus Blade does not disappoint. The writing is crisp and crackling with urgency and humor. The art is spot on, transporting the reader through time and space with a cast of engaging unlikely heroes up against a truly motley crew of villainous baddies.
Our story takes places way into the future, 2480, enough to make my head spin. But that’s part of the fun, of course. Time enough for all sorts of mayhem to have happened leaving good ole planet Earth a mere shell of its former self. Time enough for the upper class to have gone even higher, all the way to an outpost on Earth’s moon. Everyone else stays behind back on Earth which has devolved into a Mad Max wasteland.
Despite all the dystopia, there is hope, or at least it seems that way. There’s no shortage of possibilities to this comic. Meet Steve, a guy from our own present who had it all, only to be swept up by a time portal. Meet Penelope, a member of the super elite who lives on the moon but not anymore. And meet Maximus Blade, the result of some heavy genetic mutations and not much for words. Between the three of them, you’ve got everything you need to keep the adventures rolling along quite nicely.
My favorite scene in this issue is probably the first scene between Maximus Blade and Steve, who is no slouch back where he comes from but is totally out of his depth in the distant future he’s been teleported into. Maximus, in the few words he grunts, makes it pretty clear he needs a tech guy and fast. Steve hesitates, but not for long. Just as Maximus is walking away for good, abandoning the “stupid kid” to certain death, Steve chimes in to say he’s actually the best tech guy ever. It’s a funny moment and pivotal to what happens next. I’m not sure why Maximus was so easily convinced but maybe we’ll find out in the next issue. For now, Max, Steve and Penelope are up to their eyeballs in death-defying adventure. This comic does a fine job with balancing action and humor leaving the reader wanting more. Not bad at all for a first issue.