Voltron #1

by Ryan K. Lindsay, Reviewer |

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Story by
Brandon Thomas
Art by
Ariel Padilla
Colors by
Marcelo Pinto
Letters by
Marshall Dillon
Cover by
Alex Ross
Publisher
Dynamite Entertainment
Cover Price
$3.99 (USD)
Release Date
Dec 7th, 2011

Wed, December 7th, 2011 at 11:58AM (PST)


Everyone has their guilty childhood pleasure represented in Saturday morning glory. Mine are “The Snorks” and “Gummi Bears.” Yours might be different. Many hold “Voltron” up as a beacon of all that was right in the 80s. Some even hold them above the venerable “Transformers.” I can see how people dig “Voltron” so long as it’s only through the sepia-toned wash of nostalgia. When you start to bring these icons forward there is bound to be some transitional resistance. This instance could actually be the example.

Most properties should be left in the early morning haze of three decades ago. Yet, to spin a dollar, near any company will churn out some stock that might capitalize on nostalgic money. There are a few good examples, maybe even some great ones, but “Voltron” is an example of how not to do it. This book is not a success at all, whether it be the writing, the art, the concept, the delivery, the characterization, or price point.

Let’s start at the start. One major action set piece clogs up most of the pages of this comic. It’s meant to feel massive and entirely necessary to dwell on in all its scope, and yet is presented through pinhole panels. Most of the fighting between our multi-lioned space hero and some cosmic monsters is so cluttered and disorientating as to be nigh incomprehensible. If you spent your childhood with your nose to the screen, needing to swivel your head to take in each frame, then this might work for you.

The rest of the issue, well, I think it’s setting up some characters but it doesn’t give them enough to actually do apart from one token action each – one holds a gun, one holds binoculars, one complains, etc. To call these people clichés would be giving them too much credit. A cliché is fully formed and dimensional. There is nothing in this comic to hang your hat on and want to come back for.

No, I lie, there are four relatively interesting pages hidden in this shrine to licensed media mediocrity. A scientist is kidnapped by the American government years before the Voltron of the future and forced into a major job. The reveal of who this scientist becomes in the future is neat. If you don’t mind paying a dollar a page for quality and can ignore the stiff art then you might have a reason to return next month. Maybe.

“Voltron” was never actually that great; I’m going to burst that bubble. It proved to be a low rent Transformers back then and with its wannabe Michael Bay ‘direction’ here shows it hasn’t progressed any further than being a facsimile copy with lowered fidelity and less public interest. Ignore this comic because it will lower your perception of Dynamite as a company and that isn’t fair; they do some great work. This book is actively mediocre and you deserve much better.