The GeeksverseExtreme 2012

Extreme 2012
Published on Tuesday, October 18, 2011 by


Written by: Various
Art by: Various
Colors: Various
Letters: Various
Cover Art: Rob Liefeld w/ Matt Yackey
Editor: Eric Stephenson

At NYCC one of the big announcements was the return of Rob Liefeld’s Extreme properties, some of them anyways. The new series will pick up with continuing numbering of the originals. The new creative teams were announced and a comic was released showing off the new teams and parts of the titles.

This review won’t be like a normal review as these are 5-6 pages that aren’t complete stories. They are meant to introduce the characters and their worlds as well as the new creative teams and this review will be more of a “this sounds interesting” kind of look at the titles.

Prophet
Story: Brandon Graham
Art: Simon Roy
Letters: Ed Brisson
Colors: Richard Ballermann

At first look, with what was provided, this looks the most changed from the others. The story concerns John Prophet walking up from a “Hyper Pod” in the future. How he got in the pod, and why he awoke at that time, are unknowns and presumably what the series will be about. We don’t get much of a look at this future, just some of the odd new creatures that inhabit it.

The narration is a bit different. It’s a kind of 3rd person narrative, but not like someone telling a story, it’s more of the narrator stating the facts of what Prophet is doing. That the narrator knows the name of the new creature, something that Prophet shouldn’t, adds to the oddness.

The character seems nothing like the original Prophet in looks and the tone of the series is different as well. It’s a bit different and has a “last man on Earth” kind of feel to it. The pages shown really aren’t enough to get a full measure of just what this series will be about.

The art is odd as well. It’s not bad art, technically it’s good. The storytelling is clear and flows naturally. Prophet has a caveman quality to his appearance and it’s hard to tell if that’s intentional, an aspect of the character they want to play up like a man from the past in the strange new future.

As a selling point for the new series I don’t think this sample works. It’s really different from the Prophet I remember so any possible nostalgia connection is lost. There isn’t enough of the new Prophet or world to form an opinion on.

Glory
Story: Joe Keatinge
Art: Ross Campbell
Letters: Doug Sherwood
Colors: Ryan Hill

The original Glory was really just a new take on Wonder Woman. The panel at NYCC talked about her being half-god/half-demon and being trained to fight a war. I don’t remember any of that from when I read Glory. I was a huge Image nut back in the day (it was new, it was still super heroes but it was trying to be different; I liked things like that back in the day which is why I was such a big Crossgen fan too, and I’ll talk more about that someday in a future column) and I read alot of Glory’s stuff but definately didn’t remember that.

The story is set in two times, and Keatinge does a good job of setting up how long lived Glory is. The first part is her as a young child telling her mother that she wants to go to Earth and be with the humans, the second part is during WWII and she’s a little older. We don’t know how much time has passed and it’s smart to keep it vague. Her comment in the first part about training for 500 years, and the obvious age difference in the second, helps reinforce that she’s very old.

Like Prophet this sample doesn’t do much to set up what the book is going to be about. And I have a hard time seeing how this will be a continuation of the previous series. Much like Prophet it’s just too different. That’s not to say it’s bad. Keatinge seems to be setting up something that could be interesting and Glory’s attitude is refreshing in a way.

And the art is refreshing too. Glory is drawn like the strong woman she is. No longer does she have the model’s body, as her look is more body-builder-ish. She’s muscular more then statuesque. The splash page of her punching the tank is great to look at. It’s not normally a style that I like, but I think that having this style on the Glory book is a good choice. It shows that this is meant to be more then another “good looking female character beats people up” kind of book.

Glory is one that looks like it’ll be worth checking out.

Supreme
Story: Alan Moore
Art: Erik Larsen & Cory Hamscher
Letters: Chris Eliopoulos
Colors: Steve Oliff

This is the one that is the least changed. The idea is that they will take the last scripts that Alan Moore had done, previously unpublished, and do those stories then Larsen will take over the book. I got a chance to speak to Larsen at NYCC and got a bit of the upcoming story and it’s definately one that I’m looking forward to.

I’ve always liked Supreme and I enjoyed the first issues more then the Alan Moore ones. Moore made him into a Superman-clone and even told stories that seemed like the silver age Superman, giving Supreme secret identity, multiversal selves, a super dog, etc.. What I always like about Surpreme was that he was a jerk. And I was glad to hear that that is what he will be once more.

The sample is part of the Moore scripts so it felt like that. It involves a meeting between Supremes new girlfriend, Diana Dane (DD like Lois Lane, more connections to Superman) and Supreme’s sister Suprema (think Supergirl). Suprema acts like a protective sister checking out her brother’s new girl. There’s a couple of funny moments.

The thing that this sample really shows off, since the story is one we know will be changing after the Moore scripts are done, is what the book will look like. Larsen is going to be providing rough pencils with Hamscher finishing it. The finished product is nice looking. You can still see Larsen’s influence in the art, but there’s a softer feel to it. Hamscher takes the sharp edge off Larsen’s pencils. I’ve always liked Larsen’s work but I know some don’t. Hamscher’s softening might help sell it to those that aren’t fans.

Supreme is one I’ll definately be picking up.

Bloodstrike
Story: Tim Seeley
Art: Francheco Gaston
Letters: Crank!

This is another one that seems pretty close to the original. Cabbott’s look has changed but otherwise the idea is the same. Project: Born Again took a dead super hero and turned him into a black ops zombie, someone they can just throw at the enemy and reuse over and over again.

Seeley’s story is probably the best of the samples at showing what the book will be about. It’s got some action showing Cabbott going up against alot of foes and it’s got him talking to a shrink. So the sample shows the books action and emotional sides. It shows that Seeley is going to get into the heads of the zombie characters and see what makes them tick. He does a good job of describing what un-life is like for Cabbott.

The art is solid. It’s got a nice look and fell. Gaston’s storytelling is good even with some odd angles and perspectives that he chooses. It all works though and makes for a good looking comic.

This one seems like it’ll be worth checking out.

Youngblood
Story: Jon McLaughlin
Art: Jon Malin & Rob Liefeld
Colors: Matt Yackey

And where would an Extreme relaunch be without it’s flagship title? This is the one that started Image so it’s only right that it returns as part of the Extreme relaunch. The sample pages shown were only art, no letters. So that makes it harder to judge to see if it’s worth picking up.

But honestly, what old school Image fan isn’t going to pick up Youngblood? Even if it’s just for curiousity.

The art looks like vintage Liefeld. Even if Liefeld inked/finished Malin’s pencils, it wouldn’t have had this much of an influence to make the art this Liefeld-like. So it must be something intentional on Malin’s part. And I think it is as there are some pages that don’t have the Liefeld-like layouts and some of the poses aren’t Liefeld-like. But there are enough there that the overall product looks very much like something Liefeld drew.

There are alot of awkward poses and some serious jumps in the story. Makes me wonder if these weren’t consecutive stories. Liefeld has never been a strong storyteller and it looks like Malin is following in those footsteps.

But maybe McLaughlin will give a strong story? Vogue looks like she might be very interesting this time around. There’s a playfulness/carefree feel to the character this time. And I’m curious to see if the changes in Shaft are just physical or if there’s more to it.

Where Supreme and Bloodstrike are pick-ups due to the story, this one will be grabbed mostly for curiousity.

I have a feeling the samples are the first pages from the upcoming “first” issues of the relaunched titles. If that is the case, then they’ll work better as part of the first issues then as samples (at least in Prophet’s case). Overall this book works as a way of reintroducing the characters. The overall samples may not be the strongest, but they do make the reader curious.

I’m really interested in seeing what a new generation will think of these books compared to old schoolers like myself.

Go to the Pryde’s forums and join the discussion on these books.

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