A.J. Rojek (w), Tom Hoskisson (a), Daniela Barisone (c)
Coming soon to a galaxy near you, it’s Torch: Reclaim the Skies. Torch was once the best star pilot in the galaxy – a true kid prodigy – until she was put out to pasture. Now older, retired and bored, she lives with her younger brother Spark, drinking away her pension. That is until one fateful trip to the city lands the duo in hot water – reawakening Torch’s thirst for adrenaline! After a wild bar fight and evading the police, Spark sees the joy that being on the run brought his sister, so the two decide to become fugitives!
Sometimes, as sci-fi fans, we are looking for a very cerebral and conceptual story, and then sometimes we are looking for a good action-driven tale with a protagonist who talks smart and kicks ass. With Torch: Reclaim the Skies we get the best of both!
With this first issue, the story jumps right into the second act of Torch’s character’s story arc. Torch is our talented and heroic lead, filled to top with salt and vinegar. She is supposedly enjoying early retirement after being a young military hero, but has way too much energy to burn and wasted potential to use. She reads with the off-kilter intensity of John McClain or The Bride (Kill Bill). While I’m sure the action and badassery that got her to this point is awesome (and I hope we see more of it in future issues), I was way more interested in her present character development and where she goes from here. In this first issue, A.J. Rojek expertly shows how to create and develop characters that a reader cares about and are willing to follow. The writing revolving around the world and setting is also exemplar, the world Torch is a part of us has just enough detail to show it was well thought out but the story doesn’t bury the reader in unnecessary minutia.
White the story was superb, equally impressive are the visuals. The art team of Hoskisson and Barisone create vivid pages and panels that draw the reader in. The fantastic details, brilliant coloring and well planned lay-out synthesize into the definition of excellent artistic story design.
The Bottom Line: If you are going to do one indie comic kickstarter – make it Torch!
Score: 11 (out of 13)