Welcome to Tranquility: One Foot in the Grave #1

by Timothy Callahan, Columnist/Reviewer |

Story by
Gail Simone
Art by
Horacio Domingues
Colors by
Jonny Rench
Letters by
Travis Lanham
Cover by
Neil Googe
Publisher
Wildstorm
Cover Price
$3.99 (USD)
Release Date
Jul 21st, 2010

Sat, July 24th, 2010 at 11:06AM (PDT)


Years back, when Wildstorm pulled up its leather-encrusted bootstraps and relaunched its core lineup with dream team creators -- Morrison, Ha, Lee, Azzarello, Simone, other people -- only one book really stood out as something special, and it wasn't even one of the relaunches. I'm talking, of course, about "Welcome to Tranquility," which didn't have the benefit of two Gene Ha-drawn issues, or one Jim Lee drawn issue, or a handful of Azzarello stories about mean dudes, but it did have something else: personality.

Gail Simone and artist Neil Googe injected so much character into the land of Tranquility -- basically a retirement community for superheroes -- that it stood above its Wildstorm peers as a title worth reading. In was dark and full of life, it was tragic and funny. It was good. And it continued on for a while even after Simone stopped writing it, which always seemed wrong, because out of all the work she's done in comics, "Welcome to Tranquility" seemed to capture her authorial voice the most strongly.

Now, the series is back, and so is Gail Simone. Neil Googe is just doing covers, but Horacio Domingues, who has drawn these characters in the past, is a fine replacement. You might remember Domingues from that Paul Cornell-scripted Fantastic Four vs. Fiction miniseries from a couple of years back, and his art looks a little more polished here than it did on that Marvel book. Domingues has a thin, angular line, and it fits nicely with the chiseled angularity of these old-timers and their super adventures. Because adventure is what this comic is all about. Or, maybe not. Maybe it's about the uncertainty swirling around a strange place, filled with strange characters trying to make their way through life. Yeah, that is what it's about.

"One Foot in the Grave" recalls Simone's first arc on the series, when Mr. Articulate was found dead and the town turned itself upside down looking for the killer. It turned out to be the mayor himself, or was it? Things were not as they first seemed.

Mayor Fury finds himself released from prison in this opening issue, but there are more mysteries inside, as a shadowy figure smashes the sheriff's car and pulls the mayor