This collection is a bit bigger than the first edition, with 100 pages instead of 80. The first half of the issue features a series of stories telling the origin of PSYCHE. Psyche is basically a living spirit which, from the beginning of humanity, has always chosen one human to be the embodiment of human potential, gifted with amazing mental powers, as well as enhanced strength and agility. The spirit is re-incarnated into a new human once a lifetime. This particular time it has been reborn into an 11 year old boy in England. His parents are contacted by a secret organization called the Pysche Elders, who explain the situation to them, and he’s taken to a hidden island by a special spirit guide named Christina, where he spends several years being trained in the history of the all the previous Psyche’s, as well as how to use his own powers. @ age 19 he returns to civilization, setting up residence in small flat in poor British neighborhood, where he quickly put his new powers to use in confronting a local street gang which had terrorizing the people who live there. Then he sees a man who has designed a special costume for him, and Kyle is really excited about the possibility of being a real live superhero, meanwhile Christina is not all that impressed with Kyle’s attitude.
The rest of the story shows Kyle out on patrol @ night, tracking down and attempting to capture a supervillain named THE RAPTOR, getting knocked out and tied up by The Raptor, getting free and catching The Raptor, but then losing him. Then he returns home and meets an attractive new neighbor, and potential love interest, named Helen.
The next story features the origin of a superheroine named STREEX. She’s really a 14 year old girl named Mina, whose mother died in a car crash 4 months earlier, and now she lives with her father, a local scientist, and her bratty little sister. One day while visiting her father @ his job, she encounters a mystical artifact that her father was studying and finds herself able to transform into an adult woman, who happens to resemble her later mother, who has special energy-related powers and can movie @ super-speed. Later, while hanging out with her best friend, she finds herself attacked by a bizarre creature called THE SHRIEKER, whom she defeats with her new powers.
The final story features MAGNETRON. As the story begins, Magnetron is employed as a super agent for an organization called The Department of Abnormalities, and we see him in the North Pole fighting a furry beast, which appears to based on the legendary Yeti, defeating him with his magnetic powers. It’s a very short story, and we’re not given much info on the character, other than he was found as a baby, apparently by the DOA, with a note saying his name is Ethan, 21 years ago.
Each story features DANN’s trademark British-y humour, and signature art style. I guess that would be my only slight complaint is that many of his characters, both in hear and in previous comics, tend to be a bit too similar in characterization. All the heroes are cool kids (they all tend to be young) who make wise-cracks while fighting bad guys. Both Psyche and Streex fit the trope of The Random Young Person Who Is Chosen To Be A Great Hero. He could do well to attempt to diversify his line-up a bit. That’s not to say that he isn’t VERY good @ the type of stories he does, because he is.
The collection also features a 2-page story of DANN’s time traveling slacker mascot FUT, whose sister, FUTURIA, drops by to gloat about the trouble he’s in, for pissing off their father. It’s always good to see FUT in action.
Overall, I give this 4 out of 5 stars.
Concept Core 2 (& other DANN comics), can be bought via Indy Planet.