Jody Houser and Ibrahim Moustafa have crafted a fine start to the next phase of Mother Panic’s adventures.
The Milk Wars are over and Mother Panic has landed in a Gotham City in which her villains have won in Mother Panic Gotham A.D. #1. Is it good?
Violet Page finds herself picking up the pieces in the aftermath of the Milk Wars event, as she navigates an alternate universe’s Gotham City in which Batman has been missing for then years. Rather than stumble around, establishing the status quo, writer Jody Houser opts to dive right into the story as Midnight Panic seeks out answers.
While being a follow up to the Milk Wars event and the previous Mother Panic series, Mother Panic Gotham A.D. #1 still does a good job of introducing readers to Violet and Rose. Sure, new readers who saw the title and picked it up might feel like they were thrown in the deep end, but Houser’s script offers enough character moments that it’s not to hard to get oriented in the world. That being said, Mother Panic Gotham A.D. #1 is a fairly dense issue that offers rewards to those who have been following along.
The artwork by Ibrahim Moustafa is great with its noir-like sensibilities. Moustafa has a good feel for when to isolate the characters from their backgrounds, heightening some of the dramatic moments, especially for Rosie, the “Robin” to Violet’s “Batman.” Moustafa at times seems to evoke the work of Tommy Lee Edwards who worked on the previous series, but it never feels derivative.
The colors by Jordan Boyd and Marissa Louise do a wonderful job establishing the tone. A lot of times, books with darker tones can get stale visually, often due to the color palette. Boyd and Louise avoid that by shifting the color palette between reds, blues, and greens, giving the book a varied feel.
A short backup by Hauser and artist Paulina Ganucheau really helps establish this alternate version of Gotham via an advertising piece by Collective Industries. Ganucheau’s artwork really captures the bright, flashy side of the advert before suddenly shifting tones in a way that feels really satisfying.
Is It Good?
A new phase rather than a full reboot, Mother Panic Gotham A.D. #1 offers longtime followers some rewarding moments. But, even for readers new to the Young Animal imprint, Jody Houser’s sharp script and the atmospheric work by Ibrahim Moustafa offer up enough pleasures to keep reading and should pique curiosity to check out the previous series.