Written by Kathryn “Comic Uno” Calamia
Drawn by Wayne Brown
Colored by David Aravena
Published by Short Fuse Media Group
I picked this up on impulse last Wednesday, as I browsed the New Submit section on Comixology. I thought the premise sounded interesting (and it was cheap). Unfortunately, it doesn’t quite live up to it’s potential.
This is the story of Casey, a seemingly average teenage girl (no age is specified), who lives with her single mother and attends a private High School (all the boys and girls are wearing school uniforms, so I assume it’s private). In this world there is one, and apparently only one, superhero, a man called INVULNERABLE. He’s loved by the public, we see posters of him, he’s on TV, and the kids in school all love to talk about him. But Casey is harboring a secret, in that she is really Invulnerable’s daughter. We learn that when Casey was 7, her father walked out on her and her mother, giving up his secret identity altogether, so that he could a full-time superhero. Naturally Casey resents him for that. And then one day Casey discovers that she has inherited her father’s powers.
Now, in a traditional comic-book, this would be the origin story of how Casey becomes a supervillian bent on Invulnerable’s destruction. But in this book Casey is unhappy with this new development. You’d think being invulnerable, super strong, and super fast would be a good thing, but I guess the point here is that Casey considers “super powers” to be a bad thing, because having them is what caused her father to abandon her. So she can’t tell her mother, who seems convinced that because Casey hasn’t shown any super powers up til that point in her life that it means Casey will never have super powers, and is quite happy with her and Casey’s “normal life” (you’d think she’s consider the possibility that Casey could develop powers later in life), but Casey does end up telling her best friend Stephanie.
Stephanie seems surprisingly calm with the knowledge that her best friend is actually the daughter of a superhero and has inherited his powers. She instantly believes Casey, even without a demonstration of her powers (I thought today’s teens were more skeptical than that?), and then the two of them go off to test out Casey’s powers, to see what extant they are and how to control them. Over the next few days we see them at a gym and other places to see that Casey can leap very far, run at least 65 mph, is very strong and invulnerable. But, all along, Casey insists that this is just for her own good and not because she’s planning to become a superhero.
Meanwhile, we catch up with Invulnerable, after he’s been interviewed for some TV show. We see him writing to Casey in some journal, wondering if he did the right thing by leaving her. It’s strange, the tone of the scene seems to suggests that we, the audience, should feel sorry for him. But as it’s presented, this was all his own choice. He’s a deadbeat dad, period. Perhaps there’s more to his reasons for what he did, but we don’t see it here.
And that’s really the overall problem with this issue. For a first issue of a brand new series, I think we should be given more of reason to want to continue reading it. But there really isn’t any “hook” here, it’s all just pretty much by the numbers superhero origin stuff that we’ve seen a bajillion times before. Even in the comic itself, when Casey and Stephanie begin to test out Casey’s powers, Stephanie makes a reference to a similar scene in the 2002 Spider-Man film. There’s just nothing really new here, story-wise. And Casey doesn’t come off as a compelling enough character on her own.
The art doesn’t help, either. It’s decent, but still quite amateurish looking. So overall the best I could give this issue is a C.