Arise, Lazarus


Lazarus #1

The new series by Greg Rucka and Michael Lark is a dystopian sci-fi study on a woman who can’t die. Our setting is the future, when there are no more nations or states, just a handful of wealthy families that govern a small number of useful serfs and a far larger population of the seemingly useless poor, called the Waste. Our lead character is Forever “Eve” Carlyle, the protector of the Family Carlyle. She’s a genetically-engineered warrior known as a Lazarus who regenerates from all damage and is a specialist in all forms of combat. She’s not exactly loved by her family, but she has her duty and she’s willing to carry it out.

Our story starts as Eve is ambushed by some Waste looking for food. They shoot her and leave her for dead, but she heals up, tracks them down, and slaughters them. And it’s soon learned that a rival family invaded one of the Carlyle food compounds, shot a bunch of guards and tried to steal the seed vaults. How did they manage to get so far onto the family property? It’s suspected that they had help from some of the serfs on the inside — one of the technicians betrayed the family, and the family expects their Lazarus to find and execute the traitor. Does Eve have enough faith in her family to do the job?

Verdict: Thumbs up. Very, very nice work here. Excellent writing and art, very enjoyable world-building and characterization. Seriously, this looks like it’s going to be a very interesting story.


FF #8

The Future Foundation returns to New York City, and we get treated to an issue of shenanigans and wrap-up. Doctor Doom makes his move to force Alex Power to be his pawn. Bentley-23 and Ahura wage a Home Alone-style battle against all the other kids in the Baxter Building. Darla Deering gets a couple of rings to help her change into her Miss Thing costume more quickly, leading to a sequence designed to appeal to comic fans of my advanced age. Medusa and She-Hulk have a brawl over Medusa endangering the kids and Jenn’s refusal to treat her like nobility. The D.O.O.M.H.E.R.B.I.E.S. discuss Daft Punk, and some of the Fantastic Four’s greatest enemies prepare to make their moves against the Future Foundation.

Verdict: Thumbs up. It’s a fairly humdrum issue, in a way — most of it’s devoted to fairly friendly slugfests. But the bits with the Thing Rings, Daft Punk, Doom, and a few other small but significant moments carry this one over the top.


Young Avengers #6

We check in with a couple of character who aren’t part of the Young Avengers team, at least not yet — Speed, a young speedster and kinda-sorta brother of Wiccan, and Prodigy, a former mutant who managed to absorb the knowledge of a huge number of people before he lost his powers, making him a super-genius in everything from science to combat. Both of them are working for a mysterious company — Prodigy takes technical support calls on every subject from bomb disarming to how to fight Elektra. Speed assembles electronics, doing dreary months’ worth of work in mere minutes. They discover that someone wearing the costume of Speed’s former teammate Patriot is sabotaging the company, and they decide to stop him. But whoever it is, it isn’t Patriot, and he has abilities they can’t counter. What the heck is going on?

Verdict: Thumbs up. A great couple of character studies, and I hope we see both of these guys on the team soon enough. All in all, a really nice, excellently designed comic book.

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