Danger Club #1 (Image Comics)
Written by Landry Q. Walker
Art by Eric Jones and Michael “Rusty” Drake
Letters by Richard Starkings and Jimmy Betancourt
In comics, every teen hero reaches a point where he or she wants to prove capable of saving the world, or at least the day, without adult supervision. It’s a timeless theme that has fueled many excellent stories.
Those questions are at the center of Danger Club #1, which is yet another top-notch offering from Image Comics. The Earth’s young capes are in a dark place after the disappearance of their mentors, who were last seen departing for space to fight a yet-unnamed evil. Apollo, a super-teen with a god complex, has exploited their fears so well that some are falling all over themselves to follow him. But the members of the Danger Club, led by Kid Vigilante, are not having it. Actually, Kid Vigilante isn’t having much of anything. Confident and extremely tough, he provides the book’s most shocking moments. The first rule of Danger Club? Do not make him hit you.
Writer Landry Q. Walker sets a fast pace and doesn’t waste a lot of time with setup or character introductions. This is an efficient, action-packed story that makes the most of the comic’s premise. Left to their own devices, a bunch of agitated, powerful youngsters are fighting among themselves, jockeying for position and abandoning their ideals. With apologies to The Who, the kids are not alright. I’m thinking “Lord of the Flies,” only with teleportation, giant robots and sonic blasts. Walker has created quite an interesting cast of characters to develop.
Eric Jones’ art here is fantastic. Check the opening page, done retro style. The scenes in the arena where Apollo holds his messed-up auditions for sycophants hum with energy. Most importantly, Jones never lets us forget that children are the players. Everyone looks about 14, tops, making the violent scenes uncomfortably unforgettable. The color scheme is too heavy on blues, purples and grays for my liking. However, there are bursts of color that burn brightly against the moody backdrop.
With a smashing first issue to its credit, Danger Club has all the makings of a high-quality hit. Join up.
A version of this review appeared previously on Newsarama.com.