by Greg Pak, Victor Ibanez & Ruth Redmond
One of the most recognizable female X-Men characters gets a shot at her own solo title this summer. The debut issue of Storm is emotionally charged showcasing her powers and her good heart. Pak nails the pace and wastes no time giving readers a glimpse into Storm’s life outside of her team.
The book has a cold open; it begins with Storm completing her actions in order to divert a tsunami. Ororo puts her weather control to good use, saving a small village of Santo Marco. Not everyone is happy to see her. Pak gives the anti-mutant antagonists a new way to voice their mutant phobia which was both powerful and hurtful. Pak shows off Storm’s nurturing side, reminiscent of the days when Storm took a young Kitty Pryde under her wing. The first half of the book was emotional and a good highlight of Storm’s strengths as a person. The second half reads almost as if it was another book. A student is having trouble fitting in at the Jean Grey School and the student appears to bait Storm, typical teenager pushing buttons and boundaries. It’s a nicely scripted scene. There is a very knee jerk reaction which is a bit out of the ordinary for an otherwise thoughtful and coolheaded X-Man. After that point, Storm has a bit of her own teen angst; she means well and it’s all for the good of the people she rescued in the beginning of the book, but still felt uncharacteristic; a reactive approach rather than a proactive one.
Earthly tones and heavy thin lines provide a rustic appearance and enhances the emotions of the script. The art team has done a wonderful job capturing the strength and majesty of Storm. Her hair, her posture and her costume play to the strength of such an iconic character. Another standout feature of Ibanez’s art is his ability to capture the raw emotions in each of his characters’ faces. Ibanez gives background characters depth through facial features that make the story feel almost cinematic in nature. Ibanez and Redmond’s colors make the elements come to life on the page. Long brush strokes representing rain, wind and action will pull reader’s imagination bringing them further into the story.
Storm #1 is a strong debut, even with the slight shift in tone in the second half of the book. Pak’s emotional and character driven narrative are a good showcase for Storm. The art is solid throughout the book under the team of Ibanez and Redmond. With consistent narrative and this superb art team, Storm could be the book that fans have been waiting for.