cover image The Wild Storm, Vol. 1

The Wild Storm, Vol. 1

Warren Ellis and Jon Davis-Hunt. DC, $16.99 trade paper (176p) ISBN 978-1-4012-7418-4

Assassins, altered human superbeings, clandestine organizations, and threats from the stars all collide in Ellis’s reimagining of characters from the Wildstorm universe, several of which he created in their original runs. Grifter, Voodoo, Zealot, Deathblow, and the Authority’s Jenny Sparks and the Engineer all receive a makeover for today’s audience, with their world morphed into a landscape of superpowered espionage. The story follows a spur-of-the-moment act of selflessness that thwarts an assassination and sets in motion events that expose the corporation International Operations (IO) as the crafter of alien hybrid technology and the secret controller of the world. The script is as tight as one expects from Ellis (Transmetropolitan), though this first volume mostly amounts to six issues of setup and exposition, occasionally interrupted by bursts of violence. It’s not bad by any means, and what’s being established is a slow burn that will likely pay off in subsequent collections. The art by Davis-Hunt (Clean Room) is crisp and rich in detail, reminiscent of the work of Frank Quitely, though the characters’ faces all bear a certain mannequin-like blankness during the sequences not featuring mayhem. This promising start bears sticking with. (Oct.)