Sunday, February 25, 2018

Charlton Arrow #3

   The recently-revived Charlton Arrow is a love letter to the classic adventure comics created by that (sadly defunct) company.

   It's packaged to revive classic characters (like E-Man, the humorous creation of Nicola Cuti and Joe Staton) and brand new characters, like the vivid Mr. Mixit (created by Roger McKenzie and Stephen Butler), who evokes an assortment of classic Steve Ditko characters without actually being a ripoff.

   The stories are straightforward, lots of fun and easy to pick up, even if you're missing the earlier, not-always-easy-to-find issues (I'm still trying to track down issue #2).

    The issue also evokes the classic "split" comics like Marvel's '60-era Tales of Suspense or Tales to Astonish, where each hero gets a brief page count - anywhere from 12 or 10 pages to eight or six pages.

   It makes for a mighty entertaining package for this old fan, aided by the fact that these stories are created by industry professionals who know their craft.

   The issue includes: Edison Corliss, a Doc Savage-style science hero who has a run-in with a beautiful FBI Agent; a horrific fighter known as Deathwatch who faces an indestructible foe; and the crime drama starring the mysterious Blank.

   My favorite, I must admit, it the wacky Mr. Fixit. which follows young Barry Baxter, who gains super-powers (and a bizarre costume) through mysterious means - but doesn't have much time to learn about his abilities, as he's attacked by a demonic creature! The art is terrific and the story has enough of a Silver Age feel to give it lots of energy.

   I realize this series is aimed at me, as a boomer with fond memories of Charlton's comics (and others from the '60s and '70s), and it hits the mark.

   Hopefully the series will continue to grow and thrive as fans catch on to this great new series!

Grade: A-



Anonymous said...

WHAT? Was this book in Previews? Wondering how I missed this book....

Kevin Findley said...

The original Charlton Blue Beetle stories were some of the craziest stuff I read back then. The Madmen are still among the most visually arresting villains ever in a comic book.

Hoy Murphy said...

I have all three issues and love them all, especially E-Man and Mr. Mixit. Just trying to figure out that costume is a lot of fun since it combines parts of nearly every Ditko super-hero.

Hoy Murphy

Chuck said...

Anon, I think it was in there - but since the company just publishes single issues at a time, it would be easy to overlook.

Kevin, I loved Ditko's work on those books, too!

Hoy, it is fun picking out the influences in Mr. Mixit. I love the Creeper's fur collar and its new abilities!