by Jason Aaron and Mike Del Mundo w/ Marco D’Alfonso
Weirdworld is right! Holy crap is that ever a fitting title to… whatever it was that had a Marvel logo on the front of it. Centering around a character named Arkon, whom I only vaguely remember from the old X-Men cartoon series of the early 90’s, we get to see yet another strange and interesting piece to the patchwork world of Battleworld that Doom has created in the aftermath of the final incursion.
Feeling like a character created after Marvel lost the rights to a certain steel-eyed barbarian, Arkon seems to be right up Jason Aaron’s alley considering his more recent string of superhero books and the fact that his beard is clearly a descendant of a great Viking warrior. Every bit of action, every swing of the sword and bloody death is smartly done and the motivations, though base level, really serve to anchor the book to reality. You know, amongst the Squidsharks and Ogres and such. Aaron delivers with a great reveal at the end, and an even cooler title for the follow up issue. It’s not entirely clear what purpose this book will serve in the grand scheme of Secret Wars, if any, but you can’t go wrong with Jason Aaron so we’re in good hands.
Unfortunately for Jason Aaron, though, Mike Del Mundo absolutely steals this show. His pages are nothing short of dynamic and captivating and, quite frankly, the iPhone 6 screen just didn’t do something like this justice (shut up, I was at work and had no other choice). Del Mundo’s character work is as eye catching as his, and fellow colorist Marco D’Alfonso’s, color palette and overall look to the work. The quality of the art, along with the colors and lines give Weirdworld and almost 2000 AD-esque feel to it. It really is something to behold and will most certainly merit a second read on a much larger screen as soon as this day comes to a merciful end.
Marvel has a long, long history and almost certainly there were things in here that were eluded to that newer fans, who might not have read everything they could since the 70’s, might miss. Weirdworld’s scope feels large, the art is on a level all its own and all comparisons aside there’s something really great about Arkon. Sword and sorcery is a great genre and one that feels underutilized in today’s Marvel, at least in the more classic sense, so Weirdworld, though certainly weird, felt refreshing and had an interesting hook at the end. If you’re looking for something different from this great Secret Wars event, definitely give this book a shot.