“Isn’t fun the best thing to have?” Arthur Bach, Arthur.
As the old Marvel Universe was in its death throes a few of its titles went into overdrive trying to spin yarns worthy of the end of all things. It’s a tall order, to be sure. Still, Iron-Fist, with it’s quirky art and humor coupled with an irreverent story line really fit the bill for me. So, I’ve been more than a little psyched about the return of Power Man And Iron-Fist. Thus far, my optimism has been rewarded.
I’ll start with the most obvious and (for me) most important part. The book is fun. It’s way fun. David Walker‘s writing is light and fast paced. He understands the characters and their dynamic and treats the backstory with respect….but not TOO MUCH respect. Using that as his starting point he sets out to craft a story of seemingly little consequence. But it’s Daniel Rand and Luke Cage we are talking about, so things get out of hand pretty quickly. And just as quickly you begin to realize that the scope of consequence is all relative to where you are standing.
With the exception of Jessica Jones, the supporting cast here is gloriously crappy. Bargain basement villains all around. Lonnie Lincoln and his hapless henchmen are, well, hapless. Black Mariah is loud and goofy. Hell, even Gorilla Man and Ruby Thursday* make appearances. I half expect Doctor Bong to show up. The villains are, for the most part, incidental. The only thing that Danny and Luke really have to fear is the wrath of Luke’s better half, Jessica. The real story here is the interplay between the triumvirate of Daniel-Luke-Jessica as Danny does his best to put the band back together.
I won’t spoil what little plot there is. I’ll just tell you the whole package is enjoyable and a worthy diversion. Sanford Greene‘s pencils go together perfectly with Walker’s script. Greene’s line has an airy quality that is at once energetic and very much left of center. It’s well suited for the urban setting of the adventures. Words and pictures blend effortlessly and keep the story moving forward at a lively pace. There is no eye strain or confusion here…just flow.
Finally, and most importantly, it’s just fun. I enjoy reading it. It’s not important to the overarching meta-reality of Marvel. There are no world shaking consequences. It’s just fun. There are a lot of comic writers out there who imagine themselves to be funny. They are, for the most part, delusional. David Walker is funny. Not laugh-out-loud-piss-your-pants funny, but funny (OK, Luke saying “Fiddle Faddle” when he wants to drop an F-bomb is laugh-out-loud-funny). Power man And Iron-Fist will put a grin on your face. And that’s exactly what I was hoping for. I give it two thumbs, way up. I’d give it more, but that’s all the thumbs I currently have.
Anyway, that’s just my opinion, but I’m always right. Mostly.
*I have an unhealthy love for The Headmen. I’ll read practically anything with Ruby Thursday or Chondu in it. The fact that most stories involving them are utter cheese only makes it better.
He also sings for the Supra-70s band, RIFLE.