The Legacy of Luther Strode #1
By Justin Jordan, Tradd Moore and Felipe Sorbreiro
If The Legacy of Luther Strode #1 isn’t one of the coolest f%^&ing returns, possibly ever, then life just doesn’t make sense right now. This is the series that put Justin Jordan and Tradd Moore on the map, and if this is (unfortunately) going to be the final part of this story—this marks the beginning of the third installment—then these two are going to throw absolutely everything they have at it.
That, of course, is no more evident than in Tradd Moore’s artwork and style for this story. There might not be more “holy shit” moments in a comic, or more time spent drooling over insane perspective and angles than there are in Legacy. Moore’s style is 100% his own and completely unique, and it’s a damn shame he didn’t get more time in the Marvel bullpen, but it might not be for everyone. Some people might not be able to handle the extreme angles and movement in damn near every panel and might even write it off and to that, only one word comes to mind: blind. Not in the literal sense, but in the sense that those types of people fail to see the grandeur and spectacle for what it is and what Tradd is going for. It’s extreme, it’s brutal, it’s not your typical “perfect anatomy” kinda look and that’s part of what makes it so great.
His style is not the norm, by a long shot, and it’s packed full of detail and has a full range of motion from simple running scenes to the full on, utterly brutal fight scenes. Not only can this man choreograph a fight like no one’s business, he can put it all out there on the page like very few can, or have, or likely ever will. There might be five more issues for this closing act of Luther Strode, but it won’t be enough Tradd Moore because he’s just that damn good. While his work would still look stellar black and white, colorist Felipe Sorbreiro certainly adds just the right colors in just the right spots. From the sequences from the past right through to the present day, Sorbreiro is on point and slinging color with the best of them. It really is a match made by the comic book gods, and has been right from the start. This is the kind of artistry, overall, that takes what we think we know about comic art and punches it right through its chest cavity. Or face. Whatever.
Not to be outdone or forgotten, it really feels like writer Justin Jordan is at the top of his game. Since the last series was released, Jordan has done a lot of work and it feels like he’s really grown as a writer, even just within the confines of this one issue. It feels like there’s a lot more depth to the story and the characters, not that they were necessarily lacking before, and even the world that Jordan has created. The trippy flashback scene was fantastic, but making the choice to jump right back into the thick of it after the last series, after that scene played beautifully and the two sequences played beautifully off each other, potentially foreshadowing some major problems down the line.
This feels like the series these guys were meant to create and work on; they were born to do this work and tell this story, if we can go that far here. Everybody involved is so focused and so talented that what we get as a reader is so unlike anything else out there; not only is Luther Strode completely engrossing and interesting, but it has some of the best, albeit hyper-violent (in a good way, promise), fight scenes around. Great characters, great premise, great art (understatement, much?) and a helluva lot more combined to make The Legacy of Luther Strode a damn great comic book. If you can only get one book this week, get Luther Strode.