By Davey Nieves
JUPITER’S LEGACY #5
Story: Mark Millar, Frank Quitely
Art: Frank Quitely, Peter Doherty
Publisher: Image Comics
Full disclosure, I never pick up Mark Millar books when they first hit the stands. It isn’t because I don’t like the man’s work, because I think he’s tremendously talented and few writers’ craft dialogue as well as he does. I don’t know maybe it’s because Robin Williams always said it’s hard to understand Scotsmen. Who knows? Well it’s been over 10 months since the last issue of Jupiter’s Legacy and about 10 years since I’ve read a Millar comic book that wasn’t in trade form. So we’re all in for a bumpy ride.
Based on my read though of Jupiter’s Legacy #5, I can safely say I’ve missed out on one hell of tale by Millar and one of the best comic artist of this generation Frank Quitely. Issue five is the conclusion to the first book of hopefully many more to come. The dapper, matter- altering, superhuman hunting, villain Barnabas Wolfe tracks down a young boy named Jason who happens to have a lineage of superheroes in his blood. Jason and his super powered parents Chloe and Brandon battle Wolfe and his government army to keep from being thrown in this world’s version of the Guantanamo Bay.
Millar crafts another superb villain in Barnabas. He gets quick to the enticement of the character as he opens with Wolfe using his cunning to deceive a secretary into revealing herself to be an illegal superhuman. Throughout this issue the entire cast manages to have earned moments in these pages from Chloe demonstrating her overprotective mothering nature by chewing out her son on the moon to Jason who’s just trying to follow the footsteps of his family and rally the remaining superhumans. I haven’t read the first four issues but it appears as though this comic rounds out this first volume’s call to arms theme nicely and leaves readers in a place where they will definitely want more.
For all the words purveyed in this issue, it wouldn’t feel whole without what Frank Quitely brings to the table. Jupiter’s Legacy is yet another example of why Quitely is one of the best visual storytellers in comics. His use of body language and posture make the pages come to life. The visual design of these characters is what he excels at; simplicity that catches the eye. Peter Doherty’s color work is a subtle compliment to the artist’s masterful line work and blends cool and warm tones very smoothly.
The 10-month gap between issues might be a deterrent for anyone who’s been following this series since issue one. However there’s enough in issue five to justify the wait. If we scored books this one would come in damn near perfect. Jupiter’s Legacy mixes influences such as Watchmen, The Incredibles, and V for Vendetta to craft Millar’s best superhero project since Civil War.
Anyone else for casting Christoph Waltz as Barnabas Wolfe?
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