It’s a red-letter day for the good folk of Unliklistan as they start to power up their first atomic reactor. But after pushing the wrong button, the ultra-rare radioactive element, unstabilium, has been released into the atmosphere! Now it’s up to pilot Lt. Col. Richard “Dick” Atcherly and his navigator Captain Dudley “Mutt” Muller to save the day. Will they safely complete their mission? Or are things about to get a little…wacky?
Here we go, another addition to DC’s impressive library of titles featuring reimagining of classic Hanna-Barbera cartoons. This time around the focus is on Dick Dastardly and his sidekick Muttley being retold as modern characters who get swept up a bizarre antics. How does it come off? A bit forced actually.
Writer Garth Ennis seems to be trying a bit too hard to be funny with this title. It introduces concepts like a drone which farts gas which creates weird cartoon like effects on what are supposed to be normal looking characters. It’s a weird idea and gives a chuckle here and there. Unfortunately, the grounded backstory of these two as pilots being in a world where bizarre stuff doesn’t happen on a regular basis seems to make it hard to transition into the slapstick zany comedy the book is trying to obtain. It’s not bad, it just feels awkward at times.
The art by Mauricet is very good. Too good in fact. The slapstick and unpredictable humor doesn’t play well with such impressively detailed human characters. The designs feel more like they should be in a action series more than a comedy one. When it comes to comedy, everything must blend well for the humor to come off just right.
This is one of those comic series where a second issue will help to cement the idea of where the story is going. This is not a bad thing at all and seems to be a trend which is happening lately in comics. So far Dastardly and Muttley is better than Wacky Raceland but nowhere near as good as The Flintstones. Nevertheless, it’s a welcomed addition to the Hanna-Barbera library DC is creating.