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DIE!namite #1 Review

4 min read
It's just a matter of waiting for it to really get started as it's all setup here.

The next event series gets underway.

Creative Staff:
Story: Declan Shalvey, Fred Van Lente
Art: Vincenco Carratu, Justin Mason
Colors: Kike J. Diaz
Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou

What They Say:
In the shadowed alleys of 1930s Chicago, GREEN HORNET and KATO hunt the nefarious criminal element plaguing their city. They soon discover a mysterious danger that threatens Earth itself! Meanwhile, VAMPIRELLA hurtles through space on a Drakulon ship, desperate to uncover a dark mystery…

DIE!NAMITE is an event series that unites all of the hit Dynamite characters as you’ve never seen them before! They will come together to battle the biggest threat they have ever faced. Many…are even missing faces! Written by Declan Shalvey (Deadpool vs Old Man Logan, Bog Bodies) with art by newcomer sensation Justin Mason (Vengeance of Vampirella) and colors by Chris O’Halloran (Immortal Hulk).

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
While I’m not the biggest fan of event series, Dynamite has had a few different ones over the years that have worked well because you know that they’re not real game-changers in a sense as each property is its own and they’re not radically changed because of events here. That leaves us with just the fun of seeing so many different characters together and working alongside or against each other. This series comes from writers Declan Shalvey and Fred Van Lente, both more than capable of handling such a good range of characters, in conjunction with artists Vincenzo Carratu and Justin Mason. They’re able to move across multiple characters in multiple locations with it all feeling cohesive and strong, all part of the same world even though they’re all vastly different. It’s not that easy to do since each character is certainly distinctive enough.

As an opening issue, there’s really not a lot going on here. We get the nod that something bad is going on with a death plague making its way across existence but there’s not much in the way of a central opponent or force or anything but rather just the dread of the larger force itself that’s sprawling around. We do get to see it from a couple of areas and it feels like it’s the most personal when it comes to the Peter Cannon storyline as he’s going through his last round of training and preparation to deal with things. As they note, the plague has been kept out of this location forever but it’s now made it there and Thunderbolt must step up to deal with it. It’s got some solid action to it but it’s with this character, who I haven’t read in a few years I think it is now, that a lot rides because they’re just not that familiar to most readers in general and even within the Dynamite sphere.

What we do get are basically two runs of a couple of pages for the main characters as we see them in their natural state. Sonja is dealing with a fight with Zo’ran while coping with a problematic man that she’s aligned herself with temporarily. John Carter is in an elder care hospital toward the end of his life with nurses that can’t believe he’s old enough to have been in the Civil War. But he’s now able to reach out to Barsoom and transfer himself there to get back to his true family. And we get some time with Vampirella as she’s on a mission with a Drakulon space force heading to a colony to check on their progress as an ambassador only to come across a Drakulon ship that has been destroyed. You know bringing that on board is bad. Much like how Carter discovers that Helium is filled with undead of some sort and as Sonja discovers that Zo’ran is but a shadow of himself. It’s all decent setup material overall and standard fare for the start of a property like this.

In Summary:
The DIE!namite storyline doesn’t really get started here but all the pieces are put into place as you’d expect. It’s certainly standard structure, I don’t think anyone would argue otherwise, and we’ve got a good selection of characters to work with so far. A little too much hinges on Peter Cannon here as that’s where the meat of the story is and a lot of people just aren’t all that familiar with him, so that makes it a tougher place to connect with. But it’s all put together well which makes it an easy read with some great artwork to it. It’s just a matter of waiting for it to really get started as it’s all setup here.

Grade: B

Age Rating: 15+
Released By: Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: October 14th, 2020
MSRP: $3.99

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