Aftershock Comics 2016
Created & Written by Adam Glass
Illustrated by Patrick Olliffe
Coloured by Gabe Eltaeb
Lettered by Sal Cipriano
Operating in a strange land with newly forged alliances, Teddy Roosevelt and his Rough Riders race against time to uncover their true enemy before war breaks out and innocent blood is shed. But what they'll soon discover is that everyone is an adversary and what once was a mission of discovery has become a game of survival as one of our Riders is about to take a dirt nap for good.
My jaw just dropped. First of all what Adam has built in the first two issues was far and away more than enough to get everyone’s interest into high gear and then comes issue three and suddenly our worlds are turned topsy turvy. If this is the way this is going to go then oh my goodness I’m going to need a seatbelt.
Adam has a great way of telling this story, I love the idea of Teddy writing a letter his oldest daughter as we Patrick and Gabe give us the visuals of what’s happening. Also Teddy does cut a mean figure in his new uniform and looks very much as if he’s stepping out of the history books. Plus that two page spread of the gang arriving in Cuba and heading ashore yeah that’s some incredibly good stuff. While Teddy is who he is and he’s done so much in his life up until this point so his assessment of those he travels with should be paid attention to.
So Thomas Edison is a great choice for this group but also a puzzling one when one considers that Nicola Tesla is around as well. For the younger has a penchant for gadgets and creativity that his mentor does not. Though we’ve seen what Edison is capable of throughout this issue however we see that perhaps it may not have been the wisest of choices. I kind of like that we question his involvement too because that makes Teddy more human and sentimental and really more relatable.
Then his characterization continues when he meets the Admiral. Then we see what more what we think of when Teddy Roosevelt comes to mind. Though where he got his uniform yeah that was priceless. The characterization continues with Houdini and Johnson as they are paired up, leaving Edison and Annie in the first round of exploration and information gathering. I have to say that aside from Roosevelt, Houdini may have the most speculation and focus in popular culture over the years and Adam’s portrayal of him here is wickedly fun.
While the first half the book is exactly what we’re expecting it to be it’s the second half that will shatter any kind of expectations you’ve had coming in. Not only is it some of the most unexpected and exciting turn of events to come along but it’s got that faced paced and thrill ride atmosphere to it that would make any secret agent jealous of. It also takes this story in a direction that will leave your mouth agape and speechless.
Ah Patrick’s interiors are simply divine here. I love the attention to detail he brings and he is able to give this book that flow it needs to mimic what’s happening in the story. From the “normal” to the extreme you feel like something changes in the blink of an eye here. HIs ability to portray both action and stillness or beauty and the unexpected is a huge bonus to Adam’s writing.
Already the best example of why we love Alternate History stories this continues to break barriers and move to places you’d think it wouldn’t be able to.