Story: Joe Casey
Art: Deric Donovan
Colors: Bill Crabtree
Letters: Rus Wooton
Published by Image Comics
Youngblood created by Rob Liefeld
If you’re a regular reader of the site or a listener of the podcast you know my insane love for Image Comics and especially for Youngblood. I haven’t been talking about this current series all that much for a variety of reasons, so I thought I’d take a chance with this latest issues to do just that.
Youngblood has had a rough start in my opinion. The book hasn’t been shipping on a monthly basis for one, but I’m good with that. I think its one of those titles that reaches a certain audience and we’re patient people. We’ll wait. In my opinion Joe Casey and Deric Donovan are worth the wait. I think the delay in the recently released hardcover of the original miniseries hurt things, too. The big thing was that this new series would be launched as a lead in to the hardcover coming out and it didn’t happen when people thought it would. I think there would have been a lot of momentum for the two to build off of each other. It would have been interesting to see if things had gone as planned.
This current series has been a good read. Casey’s quirky writing style fits these characters perfectly because he knows how to balance reality and quirkiness. I think with characters like Shaft and Task you need to know how to write the straight man without making him a parody. Casey has both of these characters written well. I think that now there are two teams of Youngblood running around and these two leaders are sharing screen time there’s a possibility for too much, but that’s not happening.
I had a feeling early on that this series would be more action comedy than anything else, but I was wrong. Yes, there’s a lot of humor in this book and there’s a lot of action, too, but there’s more. There’s a very serious tone in it. Badrock’s current situation in the book is pretty serious. While Televillain looks rather ridiculous in costume, his character is a murderer and there’s nothing funny about it. Casey definitely writes a complex story around a very complex set of characters and personalities and it makes for a good, enjoyable read every issue.
Deric Donovan’s art continues to be really good. Donovan has made this book and these characters his own with each and every page he draws. The same way Casey balances the myriad of tones in his writing, Donovan does the same with his artwork. There are moments of humor, like the conference room scene with Task, Sentinel, and Jamm. Then there are others where Televillain is pressing the barrel of a gun to a victim’s face. Two totally different scenes and moods and Donovan pulls it off with strong visuals. Its good stuff.
This series continues to be a good, solid read every issue. If you have not been reading it, you can still jump on from the beginning. There is an overall story that’s building since issue one, and it is helping establish what this Youngblood world is all about. Casey and Donovan are making this Youngblood fan happy and I’m sure I’m not the only one.