Publisher Arcana Studios
Pencils Fran Moyano
Colors Jay Morano
This issue collects the first six chapters in what could be a great story surrounding the prison for super criminals.
The official hype “Less than 30 miles off the coast of
We have two main characters in this story. One is Warden Clarke Devlin and the other is the Captain in charge of the violent criminal area, Jason Brody. Jason is our point of view character as he was just fired from being a Captain of a prison guard for use of excessive force and is recruited by the Warden to come to his prison and work for him.
The first six issues give us three main stories about different prisoners. The first is about a criminal called Payback, who is a Punisher type with more religion. He wanted to be put into prison so he could kill the bad guys. Jason’s solution is to allow him a chance to meet a bunch of these bad guys in the shower while Jason looks away. Payback is comatose but it appears he will get better and make a return appearance.
A second story is about a prisoner called the Conductor. Now it should be stated that all the prisoners are meta-humans, but the collars they wear nullify their powers. The Conductor has been there for 25 years and is hopeful of winning parole. When his parole is rejected he plots a means to escape the prison and is ultimately thwarted by Jason. The Conductor has gotten rid of his collar, so Jason has to beat a super powered electrical villain using his own wits.
Within inside these issues we are treating to a rich cast of characters. We have Jason’s wife, the assistant warden, Officer Liz Morales, Isabelle Josephs the head doctor of the prison and other prisoners. Each cast member is obviously thought out as they are far from cardboard additions to decorate the book with. The Warden is working with a mysterious man behind the scenes on some nefarious type plot it seems and that web will draw in Jason. The prison doctor is trying to put the moves on Jason, but he seems to be a happily married man. This appears to be a well thought out concept and I’m guessing that almost every main character has a back story already written.I would also venture to guess that the writer has a good idea how the main story ends.
If I have a real complaint about this story is that after reading this trade I really need to see the next trade as now I’m engrossed by the story. What are the Warden and Assistant Warden up to? What happens when Payback gets out of his coma? Will Jason survive this job? Will his marriage survive the doctor?
What has been laid out in these six chapters is a place that is rich in individual stories of each prisoner and at the same time rich in an overall story of Jason and the Warden. I could see this being a great weekly TV series like an Alias,
Next up is the artwork. I’m not familiar with Fran Moyano, but I would certainly be happy to see his name on a comic. Fran has a realistic style that is rich in details, His story telling ability was also strong as I was never lost while reading the book. There were some panels and pages that were a little inconsistent and a few camera angles that I thought were odd choices, but for the most part I found Fran’s work to be very strong and skilled. Little details were everywhere and one that was I noticed was the doctor was crying and knelling down in obvious despair and her heels came up out of her shoes. It is a small detail, but is shows Fran put a lot of effort into his work.
The odd thing is the cover of the book does not look as good as the interior. In the back matter we get a picture of the cover just as pencils and it looks a lot better. I’m not sure why, but maybe the inking of process used to color the cover made it slicker then Fran’s work inside looks.
Overall Grade A
Tagline: Find out what happens after the good guys win. Join the bad guys for life in the big house.