Friday, May 20, 2011

Rocketeer Adventures #1

When I reviewed an early appearance by the Rocketeer a couple of weeks ago I didn't realize his new adventures would be showing up so soon!

But it's wonderful to see Cliff Secord once again taking to the skies, even if, sadly, creator Dave Stevens is no longer around to guide his adventures.

When the character first hit it big and it was obvious that Stevens wasn't going to be able to crank out regular issues, the plan was to have other artists work on the character - but sadly, that never happened - until now!

I suspect every writer and artist in the business would like to be part of this project, which features short adventures and pin-ups based on Rocketeer Adventures.

And what a lineup for this first issue: behind a cover by Alex Ross (well, on the issue I bought - there are others, of course), you have stories and art by John Cassaday (is this his first writing gig?), Mike Allred, a story by Kurt Busiek with art by Michael Kaluta, and pinups by Mike Mignola and Jim Silke!

The only complaint is that the stories are all very short - just eight pages each - but they're all a lot of fun!

Allred's story is the most offbeat of the bunch (as you'd expect), but it's loaded with energy and a love of flying (is it a continued story? I'm not sure). Cassaday's is a pure romp as the Rocketeer tries to save Betty from some gangsters who have a rocket of their own. Busiek and Kaluta focus more on Betty, but it's a lush and delightful wartime adventure with a killer final page.

So, lots of fun, some terrific art by some of the best in the business. Who could pass this up?

Highly, highly recommended!

Grade: A



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