IDW Publishing 2015
Written by Marc Guggenheim
Illustrated by Dave Bullock
Coloured by Ronda Pattison
Lettered by Gilberto Lazcano
The Rocketeer for me is hit or miss and it usually depends on who’s writing it and what the cover looks like for me to try it. Let me just this first I love Marc’s writing so that was a huge factor and then I saw Nick Bradshaw’s cover and wowie! Though Dave does the interiors I still can’t get over that cover image it’s gorgeous! So here we go as we join World War II and the adventures of the Rocketeer…..
I do like the opening page that whole whole news style is really spot on the era it is from and it’s something that feels right, also missing from today’s world. Then we’re off to the races or are we? At an U.S.A.F. Base in England it looks like the Rocketeer is being put through his paces by a group of onlookers. Unfortunately the allies don’t have the original Rocketeer just someone trying to play the part as they test a jet pack they’ve created based upon the original. What I like about this is that while they try and try they cannot duplicate it and that means there’s only going to be on Rocketeer not a squadron of them. That kind of individuality is important at least to me.
So where is the original Rocketeer anyway? He’s not using the new pack we know that much. Well he’s actually in the trenches and working on engines. Cliff Secord has signed up for service towards his country. Still when an R.A.F. jockey is shot and crashes we see him still act the hero and rescue… her.
Aww I think part of me loves that Betty Paige is his girlfriend because it’s just so out there that it’s wonderful, even if her last name is officially mentioned that photo of her pretty much sealed the deal for me. Though let’s be honest here as cute as Dave’s work is I find it more suited to something more all-ages and less what i’d like to see here. It’s very cartoony in nature and something we’d likely see on Cartoon Network nowadays and I miss the real attention to detail and that which makes the men men and the characters really pop. Still he’s a good artist just not what I think of when I see Rocketeer I guess. This is war it should have oomph to it not some aww it’s nice and kind of innocent looking.
So Marc however keeps me so thoroughly entertained by the story and characterization it makes up for that. Oh and the flying Nazi trying to steal a part yeah that’s way cool like some kind of flying squirrel though the suit would suggest bat the smoke looks like a tail so… This confrontation along with the opening well this all conspires to change Cliff’s life yet again as now he’s being conscripted to service for his country as the Rocketeer. Though really how many people know his dual identity anyway? Wouldn’t that be dangerous for so many to know? Eh it’s WWII and things were different back then though once the wars over I see a whole slew of new consequences on the horizon.
So with a new purpose, new allies and his girlfriend on the way it seems that the high flying adventures are only beginning again. However we also see what the Axis has been up to and it’s no laughing matter. Will Cliff be able to stop them and survive stay tuned for the next thrilling chapter to find out!