cover image Omni, Vol. 1: The Doctor Is In

Omni, Vol. 1: The Doctor Is In

Devin Grayson and Alitha E. Martinez. H1, $14.99 trade paper (96p) ISBN 978-1-64337-619-6

Grayson (the Batman series) and Martinez (the Black Panther series) wield their combined superhero comics experience to launch this inventive series set in H1’s new alternative universe. Dr. Cecelia Cobbina can project nine differently colored psychic avatars, each endowed with a distinct intuitive skill set. She’s working with Doctors Without Borders in Central Africa when she defuses an operating room hostage crisis with empathy, avoiding violence. Accompanied by cartoonist Mae Walters (who fictionalizes their adventures in comic book form), Cecelia returns to the U.S., soothing various explosive events involving other superhumans, such as getting young hero Antony Miller out of police custody. But to her dread, she discovers her powers are not natural gifts—they are symptoms of a poisoned and dying Earth. When Cecelia is recruited by the enigmatic Sajan to run the ultrasecret Omni Corporation, ostensibly an underground institute to help the newly powered, the question becomes: is Omni a force for good or evil? Martinez’s realistic figure drawings are employed in dynamic and energetic motion work, while Bryan Valenza’s colors pop and sizzle, with lively polychromatic splashes across the page. Suitable for a young adult audience and sporting a diverse cast, this is a fresh, activism-oriented spin on the genre. (Mar.)