Review: The Remnant #1

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When Hollywood comes a calling to a comic publisher, it’s usually to take a property and turn it into a motion picture. In the case of The Remnant, the situation is reversed, as Stephen Baldwin heads to Boom! Studios to create a tale filled with suspense and the supernatural.

theremnant1cover.jpgFIrst off, when Boom! Studios sent out the advance copy of this issue, the company asked us to give it a look over even though reviewers may be turned off by the author.  I’ve got nothing against Mr. Baldwin – well, except the film of Fled caused me to be late to work three days in a row, and until someone told me he’s become a born again, I only know him from the moments I’ve seen him on screen.

While he is the creator and is credited as co-plotting the story with Andrew Cosby, the actual script is written by Caleb Monroe, so the religious themes are kept to a bare minimum – at least in this first issue.

The first supernatural moment we get in this story is when a seemingly dead body is retrieved from the flooded streets of New Orleans following hurricane Katrina.  A mysterious man, dressed in black, whispers something in the dead man’s ear that shocks him back to life.

The story then jumps some time later where the reader is introduced to David Sacker, a federal employee, as he tries to get his new wife added to his insurance.  An error sends him outside to get a document from his car, and as soon as he is far enough away, the federal building blows up.  Lying on the sidewalk, David sees the once dead man standing over him before blacking out.
David is fine, and his young wife takes him home from the hospital to mend and recover.  It’s too bad that just as soon as they start some “sexual healing”, two members of homeland security show up to take David’s wife Sarah in for questioning.  Seems among all the rubble of the destroyed federal building, investigators found a USB drive with a lot of Sarah’s personal information on it.
This leads to a confrontation between David and the lead investigator, as David goes above her head to some of his former spook friends that allows him a moment alone with his wife. There is no resolution to his questioning, but it is clear that he believes his wife is just a victim of circumstance.

To make matters worse, when David returns home, the dead man once again approaches, and the two get into a bit of fisticuffs followed by a chase, where David loses track of his would be assailant.  This occurs about the same time the homeland security folk discover Mr. Dead might be a suspect in the case.

So, religious themes?  Except for an occasional use of the word Heaven, and the man who’s returned from the dead, there’s nothing in this issue that would seem controversial.  In fact, this first issue is a great supernatural thriller on par with stories being told by other companies.  The return from the dead guy is a great swerve on the traditional spy story, and then there are the terrorist themes, and David’s agency connections that give the issue the intrigue needed to keep the story moving.

The art by Julian Totino Tedesco is really good too.  There are a few times when the heavily inked lines can cause one character to look like another, but other than that, the way Tedesco draws the human form is really good.  His pacing in the action sequences are great, and the color selection by Andres Lozano bring everything to life.

Again, this is only the first issue, but if The Remnant stays on par with some of the other brilliant thrillers Boom! Studios has been putting out, you can expect this series to have a very satisfying ending without whatever controversy surrounding Stephen Baldwin is forced into the issue.  The Remnant #1 earns 4.5 out of 5 Stars.

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85/85