by Matt Kindt and Steven Sanders
What if the many schools for super-powered individuals found a way to interact through healthy competition? Something along the lines of Harry Potter’s ‘Triwizard Tournament,’ the many heads of different metahuman schools have created a competition between their students. Calling it the ‘Contest of Champions,’ each school looks to send a few students to a remote island where they must work together to outmatch those members of the remaining schools. Matt Kindt’s successes, both with his independent work as well as his work in mainstream comics, have been on an impressive trajectory and may increase interest in this new title.
The story gathers the different headmasters and students together, whether in person or via satellite, to announce the competition and its potential competitors. There are schools that seem to be new knowledge to the reader as well as new characters and power sets. Most of the people on display here are very interesting. Kindt has created some very solid new potential, not relying solely on pre-existing Marvel characters. This decision, whether his or not, brings a breath of fresh air to the title, avoiding the over reliance on familiar faces that appear in over half of a dozen other titles currently.
Unfortunately, the book has little else to say. Coming in at just over twenty pages, its price tag is especially hard to stomach once it becomes apparent that for eighteen pages, the book simply introduces its schools and characters. The first issue is more of a series of bio-pages, reducing it to a massive information dump. Though there are some well written lines by familiar faces, ultimately this issue is a huge disappointment. Even the art style on display feels shallow. The character designs are familiar but still present as reduced or off from their usual depiction. Additionally, the coloring makes everything feel too polished and cold. Sanders, who has worked on books such as S.W.O.R.D. and Our Love Is Real, brings very little to this issue that could help to counter balance the absolute void in storytelling.
Infinity: the Hunt is to be a four issue miniseries. Spending one quarter of this series just introducing the characters is a giant misstep. Though there looks to be a giant cast of characters in varying degrees of familiarity, Kindt wastes the first issue with this information. A confident writer with a well written story can communicate this information to the audience through the story. Looking at an example like Dennis Hopeless’ Avengers Arena, readers were presented with a large cast, but never needed an entire issue listing out their origins and skill sets. It will be hard to convince the audience to return for the remaining issues.