By Glen Brunswick, Viktor Bogdonavic, Paul Little and Rus Wooton.
Reality Check #1 is the story of Willard Penn, a struggling artist who is looking for his big break into the comic book world. When he finally signs for a comic book, following the story of a Batman like character who is more interested in his libido, he begins to slowly lose his mind and forget everything about his story. His character soon comes to life and appears in front of Willard.
This first issue is mired in exposition and feels heavy and cumbersome to read. A good chunk of the book is dedicated entirely to the main character’s back story, making the story feel stagnant as the reader is bogged down with the past instead of the current action of the book. In all, the story is not engaging and told in a haphazard way. Brunswick bounces back and forth between Willard and his character, Dark Hour. The two aren’t linked in any way and this causes the story to be confusing. In the end, I learned more about the story from the synopsis on Image than I did from the book.
The art had an indie flare to it, and a clean design that flowed well through the pages. The colors worked with the subdued theme of the book, using darker coloring and shading. The art was the main saving grace for the book, picking up where the story fell short. The simple style that Viktor Bogdonavic brings to the pages works well with what goes on in the book, and brings out the day-to-day action of Willard’s life.
There could be some potential here for an interesting book. The ball is in Brunswick’s court, and it’s up to him on how the story goes from here.