You know comic books are being written for an older audience more than ever when the relationships between characters become more mature. Case in point: Solar: Man of the Atom, which had a fantastic father/daughter relationship. It was able to touch on elements we can all relate to and deliver a unique story from all the rest.
Call me crazy but I want more of it, so when IDW had a comic coming about a father/son relationship (this time both superheroes) I marked my calendar. But is it good?
Insufferable #1 (IDW Publishing)
The story is about two heroes. One is named Nocturnus and has a Batman vibe to him. He’s older and weathered but knows the game inside and out. The book opens with a crazy bad guy demanding money via the internet to save a girl who will be suffocated in a pit of sand. Before he can escape with the girl though, another hero named Galahad shows up. His costume, probably not so coincidentally, has a Robin feel to it and he turns out to be the son of Nocturnus. From there the story delves into their pasts, reveals Galahad has a full website following his heroic deeds and ultimately shows the two have a very complicated history.
Writers Mark Waid and Peter Krause have themselves an interesting story brewing here and a compelling way to tell it via Galahad’s website. One might think the relationship between the heroes is ordinary since so many sons hate their fathers, but a cliffhanger reveals it’s a lot more complicated than that. To make things more interesting the quick flashbacks used in this issue show a very difficult lifestyle for a kid growing up to be a hero. Clearly the father was hard on him, possibly due to the loss of the mother, and one can imagine going to high school was made even more difficult as a result. The characters get brief moments to show their true selves, but it’s clear there’s a lot of pain underneath that’s screaming to get healed.
I’m scared too.
The art by Peter Krause is solid and has a pulp comics feel to it. The layouts never get too crazy and are rather simple in the opening the book, but are much more interesting and complex when flashbacks take place. This isn’t the type of artist who’ll create a suspenseful action sequence and instead gets at the core of the characters. That’s the most important part of this series.
Is It Good?
An interesting father/son dynamic is quickly established to create a relevant and compelling mystery rife with drama.