Out of all the “Fear Itself” tie-in minis, this one felt like it sat closer to the top of the heap on its debut. The cast, a reworked Defenders team up, were great fun. The set up of Attuma taking over Atlantis was well played. It is then such a shame that the second issue lets the whole thing fall down. You could summarize this issue by saying that the gang fight some sea monsters on their way to another fight. Progress is thin, and full of the usual fighting-that-doesn’t-really-matter that tie-ins get slammed for constantly.
Giant sea monsters need to be punched and zapped and these guys are the ones to do it. Apart from being massive, these creatures don’t seem to pose any tangible threat. The scenery is bereft of any sign of society or people to be endangered. The fight occurs in a mystically colored vacuum and suffers for this lack of meaning. There isn’t even a plot token or MacGuffin associated with this fight. It simply occurs.
This book is light fun, and certainly seems to be only aiming for that level. The interplay of the characters is flippant and fun a lot of the time and that works well. The action is vibrant and has an almost cartoon feel. There’s nothing at stake, but it can be fun to just watch titans punch. This comic will appeal to you if you like the simpler things and the concepts of character or nuance aren’t for you. You can pick this one up, zone out, and pass a few minutes in simple enjoyment.
Lee Garbett’s art is good, you can see he handles the characters well. His designs and linework are a whole stack of fun, but don’t always feel like they have room to breathe. The emergence of the creatures should have been something amazing but instead felt swamped. John Rauch goes a long way to saving many pages by giving them a misty hue somewhere between childhood and awesome.
“Fear Itself: The Deep” isn’t a bad book. It just ignores how to put good things in between the stock footage. This is fun; if you’re pre-pubescent, you’ll find it a real gas. If you want any sort of story then you’re plum out of luck. That got left off the page.