By Al Ewing, Juann Cabal and Federico Blee
It’s another week and we’re treated to another re-launch of Guardians of the Galaxy. Donny Cates is out and Al Ewing takes over. The Guardians are almost becoming like the X-Men or the Avengers at this point. Their team generally has some of the same core members, but also accepts other characters into their ranks, like Nova or Beta Ray Bill. With this installment, we see the team split and other intergalactic characters take a more prominent role in the book. Where this leads is anyone’s guess, but it’s nice to see some little used characters get a chance to shine in a big name book.
As mentioned above, Al Ewing is taking over writing duties for Donny Cates. Ewing does a very good job of giving the reader continuity. The end of Cates run flows right into the beginning of Ewing’s. The reasons why certain members of the Guardians decide to sit this mission out, make sense and flow nicely with what Cates did with the characters last volume. Ewing writes Rocket as a new raccoon, which he essentially is. He’s dressing better now and has a new lease on life. Rocket’s priorities have changed a little, and it makes sense. Ewing also plays up how deep the connection is between Rocket and Star-Lord. These two have been friends for a long time, and it’s easy to forget just how close they are. The team up with Nova, Moon-Dragon and Phyla will continue to be interesting. These are good characters that sometimes get lost in the shuffle, but Ewing looks determined to allow them to shine a little in this series.
The pencils this issue are handled by Juann Cabal with colors by Federico Blee. Cabal’s pencils have a Frank Quietly vibe to them. As we look at some of the faces, they feel very similar to the unique pencils laid down by the legendary Quietly. The character design for Marvel Boy is actually pretty cool too. I’m not sure if we’re supposed to like this character or not, but so far, he has a good look and seems ok. Cabal draws his oter space scenes with Nova and Phyla perfectly too. They’re great looking and we will see the occasional planet in the background. Having said that, Federico Blee kills it on colors this week. Aside from the gorgeous blues he uses during the Nova panels, this issue is filled with vibrant colors. Evan a panel where Peter and Rocket are about to get on the ship to go on the mission, Blee has colored the sky a gorgeous green and blue. It’s hard to peel your eyes off of his amazing background colors.
It seems like Guardians of the Galaxy is in great hands. Al Ewing has delivered an exciting debut issue that leaves you wanting more. The pencils and colors bring a lot of life to this book, and the space panels rock. Guardians of the Galaxy is a book worth your time.