Writer: Fred Van Lente
Pencils: R.B. Silva
Review: Arthur Black
My Grandfather, and fishing buddy, once told me when I was a child “to catch a great fish you have to use the right bait.” Fred Van Lente must have had a similar lesson in his life. Brain Boy #1 is a great story and the perfect hook. Even though this comic line is based on the original six issue Brain Boy series that premiered in 1962, Mr. Van Lente has done it justice.
I have known about this comic’s introduction for a couple of months, my admission is I had not considered reading it, but when I saw it on the shelf, I decided to take a chance on it. This comic is a jewel.
The main character, Matt Price, is a multi-dimensional character with a funny wit and complicated background. He is a subcontracted agent for the government called a “reader asset,” referring to his psychic and telekinetic abilities. Price is assigned to the Secret Service to escort and protect a foreign leader. When a CIA agent presents a deal to extract information from Matt’s assignment, his day begins to spiral out of control.
My favorite part of the comic was right at the beginning. Matt Price is sitting in traffic and identifies loving an activity called “Hate-Surfing”. He reads the thoughts of all of the frustrated motorists and refers to it as “like speed metal and talk radio had a dirty love child that snorts adrenaline.” This is a great use of imagery. I stopped for a moment to think of what a mess of chaotic thoughts bounce around a huge traffic jam. That would be so much better than reality TV, if we could tune in on them.
The artwork within this book has a very unique style. They use coloring and shading in the panels that really support the story and help depict how Matt senses his world. The artist’s focus on eyes is really intriguing. At first this focus seems a little weird, but by the end of the book, the realization hit me that this is helping to communicate the psychic world in the comic as well. Then it all seems brilliant.
Reading this issue seemed to fly. I was truly heartbroken when I reached the last page. It hurts that I have to wait till next month for the next part of the story. If anyone has not read this book yet, get out, buy it, read it, and love it. You will not be disappointed. I am thankful I took a chance on this one.