Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Magnue Robot Fighter #3

   I think I'd really like this series, if not for the fact that I'm such a big fan of the original version of Magnus Robot Fighter.

   The new version only bears the slightest resemblance to the '60s version created by artist Russ Manning. That series was set in a (mostly) utopian future, where Magnus fought against the occasional evil robot and warned against the danger of humans becoming too dependent on robots. He also canoodled with the beautiful Leeja Clane, the daughter of a Senator.

   The new version features a hero named Russell Magnus who teaches martial arts to young people in a remote village. But he awakens in the world of North Am, a world overrun by robots of all shapes and sizes.

   He is almost immediately a fugitive and arrested. He is cross-examined at police headquarters by Leeja, who is some kind of reality TV star as a Human Hunter. When Magnus escapes, she goes in pursuit - and is absolutely ruthless in her attempts to capture him.

   It's a clever, action-packed sequence by writer Fred Van Lente and artist Cory Smith. The story is dark but brings along some interesting, challenging notions about the future and where humans fit in.

   The only reason it doesn't work for me is because it's not "my" Magnus. Leeja is brutal, her father is  a dark force, and there's not much optimism in sight (and this certainly isn't a future you'd want to live in).

   But if you're not a fan of the original, then you'd probably like this series - it's s high-octane experience, with terrific art and a smart script.

 Grade: B+



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