The first issue of Fighting American blew me away and made me want the next issue right away. Not only was it action packed, but mixed Golden Age characters into 2017 so very well. Plus the cliffhanger was sadistic and like something out of The Authority. With the ’50s characters properly stuck in 2017 let’s see what creators Gordon Rennie and Duke Mighten have up their sleeves.
So what’s it about?
The official summary reads:
The Cold War superhero returns – originally launched in 1954 by the creators of Captain America, Joe Simon and Jack Kirby! Join Fighting American and Speedboy as they navigate the dangers and wonders of the modern world.
Why does this matter?
Imagine if a Golden Age character was dropped into reality today. He’d not only be sickened by our lewd marketing, but also our lack of manners. That’s basically what we’re dealing with here, only the villains don’t rob banks — they kill for no reason at all.
Fine, you have my attention. What’s good about it?
Dude’s got strength.
This issue goes full force into two flashbacks that are juxtaposed to show the Fighting American’s origin and the rise of communism via his arch nemesis. After a brief opening that plays around with the Fighting American’s blatant sexism the comic drops you into these flashbacks that do well to tell the reader what the old battle was all about. The plot thickens after this as we learn the Fighting American is now up against something he and really no one else can explain: a sadistic killer out to do very bad things just because. Rennie does a good job showing the battles of then versus now with this piece.
There’s also an interesting element shown in Fighting American’s sidekick who appears to revel in beating the shit out of people. The sexism element is played with again with this character, like when his FBI handler hilariously says, “Oh look–everyday sexism, now available in genuine Eisenhower era flavor.” Amen to that.
Mighten draws a solid issue, particularly in the fine detail in faces. The flashback is told via six panel layouts that do well to show the villain and heroes’ sides on the left and right. I also really love how he draws hair. There’s also a great panel of Fighting American breaking from his chains from the point of view of behind him that does a good job showing his ease even with guns pointed in his face.
Scully, agent Scully.
It can’t be perfect can it?
I finished reading this issue wanting more. Four pages are devoted to the flashback with many of the others either picking up Fighting American at the police department or driving him around. The comic seems to be biding its time so as to not tell the story all in one go, which is a stark contrast to the first issue which seems jam-packed. Here’s to hoping the plot picks up in issue #3.
Is It Good?
A well rendered flashback and exposing the sexist nature of our heroes are highlights in an otherwise slow issue. I’m all in for issue #3, but hopefully, the pace picks up!