Issue: Planetoid #1
Writer: Ken Garing
Pencils: Ken Garing
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date: 6/13/2012
Silas, an ex-soldier turned space pirate, finds himself stranded on a mysterious planet in alien territory. As he explores the long-abandoned industrial ruins of the planet’s surface he will have to fend off rogue mechanical creatures, roving cyborg militias, and a hostile alien military with a bounty on his head. Silas will have to rely on resourcefulness and bare-bones survival tactics in order to stay alive and ultimately unlock the secrets of a planet where survival is a luxury and escape an impossibility.
Story: 8/10 • Artwork: 9/10 • Overall 8.5/10
Planetoid has one of the most generic main characters in the universe (orphaned, ex-military, space pirate, secret weapon) but Ken Garing’s artwork and overall story-arc make this book work. Garing’s story is simple, a very tough guy trapped on an even tougher planet. Now that the plot is out-of-the-way bring on the battles!
Garing’s artwork has an early 80’s, gritty, Japanese feels to it. The layouts worked really well to convey action and story. Four pages into the book the reader has a firm grasp on the dire situation that Silas has just landed into. Yet it is easy to show the planet, but to explain the planet and Silas’ origin it takes the entire issue. This double origin tale does lead to the reader wanting more action by the end of the issue. Also, the first issue could have used a better cliff-hanger ending. Garing needs to work harder at grabbing a hold of the reader and not letting go.
The best part of Planetoid #2 is the seven-page battle between Silas and a giant robotic worm. Garing’s layout and colors are amazing. There is a slight call back to the sand worms of “Dune” or the graboids from “Tremors,” but that lends to the feels of the book. The battle flows very well and continues the story without forcing it.
The hope for this book is that Garing has the ability to develop his characters and expand the universe because Garing has an attention to the details much like Jonathan Hickman, and that is a good thing.
Everything that was great about 80’s science fiction oozes out of Planetoid #1.
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