The raunchy, drug-fueled exploits of James Robinson and Greg Hinkle come to a close in Airboy’s fourth and final issue.
Is it good?
Airboy #4 (Image Comics)
- Hinkle and Robinson get drafted into a plot to blow up a bridge that relies on them wearing some questionable costumes. They react to said costumes in a way that is so painfully realistic that you can’t help but laugh.
- Lots of references to Robinson’s work, including LXG. Yes, he is fully aware of how badly it sucked.
- In case you didn’t know, there were drugs in the 1940’s, too.
- Lots of existential fretting + lots of kick ass action.
- A softer ending than you might expect, but still a nice one.
Is it good?
If Airboy had been a straight up action/adventure comic, then artist Greg Hinkle still would have killed it. His work doesn’t require the reader to lower their expectations for the widescreen stuff because it’s a comedy book. Add to that his uncanny knack for nailing facial expressions, and there’s not much left to say about what a great job he did with this series.
As far as the issue’s story is concerned, this was probably both my most and least favorite issue. Yeah, yeah…now I sound like the one having an existential crisis, but let me explain.
The opening was laugh out loud hilarious. I don’t mean the Demetri Martin coined LQTM (laughing quietly to myself). I mean I actually laughed while sitting at Starbucks loud enough to make people stare. Since I normally do this by screaming at my laptop while hate reading Matt Walsh articles or farting, no one seemed to notice. But still, it’s rare that I actually ‘LOL’ when reading a comic.
The middle section, however took a decidedly more dour tone. Robinson’s self-loathing reaches critical mass right before things dovetail in a somewhat soft/cliché, self-reflection heavy ending. But it’s nice…and dare I say, even uplifting. The moral of Robinson’s story isn’t something that we haven’t heard before about fighting off insecurity, but the characters took to get there made the story a lot more interesting. It also felt emotionally organic and realistic, which is saying something considering that the journey included a steampunk version of World War II.
The fictional versions of Robinson/Hinkle may be hard to like, but by the end of the series, you feel okay rooting for them.
…even when they’re dressed up Nazi offiers.