As much as I’m a science fiction and comic book fanatic, I am also a horror fanatic so when you take all three of these and push them together I just have to know more. As it’s a slow week in the mutant universe, I had a chance to branch out and check out what other titles were released over the holidays and ‘The Saviors’ was the first thing that grabbed my attention. Alien horror in comic book form? Check. Eisner Award winning author in James Robinson? Check. While I’m not overly familiar with his work on ‘Starman’ by DC, I did recall his work on ‘Cable’ and the ‘Operation: Zero Tolerance’ crossover from the 90s. Decent cover? Check.
While I was not a huge fan of the art for the humans in this book, I’m glad I didn’t leaf through the issue before picking it up as I probably wouldn’t have bought it and that would have been a shame. I know a lot of readers who like J. Bone’s style, but for me I like a slightly sharper, darker, or more realistic tone of a story if it’s going to be in black and white.
Yes, the plot caught my interest. So what exactly is Robinson’s new work about? Well we start with Tomas Ramirez who works at a garage to pay his bills, is friends with everyone who stops by, and smokes weed all day long. We begin with him telling his life’s story to a lizard which seems a little out of place but does setup your (low) expectations of the character. Speaking of his little habit, he’s smoking up by a bridge when all of a sudden…well, aliens. I’m not going to explain exactly how he stumbles upon this for those who want to see for themselves but it’s done pretty well here.
Now as much as I mentioned that I disliked the art on the human characters, it’s the exact opposite when it comes to the aliens found within. These I like. I like a lot! The style that felt almost too cartoonish for the humans in the first pages became a strong addition to the book as the aliens are introduced.
This is by no means an origin story as there are no super powers, but what we get is a great introduction to the main character and some setup of where we are going next. While there’s a mixture of humor to what is happening, I’m slightly reminded of Mignola’s earlier work. If this had the art style to match it, I would be guaranteed to be picking this up and I’m sure many out there won’t mind. The art is just not my style and I’m not sure how long I’ll be able to keep my interest up on the writing alone.
I really want to like this book as the idea of a person with no goals or ambition who is usually stoned suddenly thrust into the role of having to try to stop an alien invasion is interesting. As it’s not really going to be a humorous book, this gives an added layer in stacking the odds against the unlikely hero. It could have been a cheap and easy cop out to turn this into a stoner comedy and that’s not the route it appears to be going so I’d love to see how Thomas evolves as the tale continues.
THE SAVIORS #1
Writer: James Robinson