Nazis. Robots. Time Travel. Three things that will instantly get my attention, as the combination usually means some trippy alternate timeline stuff where the hero must reverse the effects, or lose his loved ones forever.
TOM STRONG AND THE ROBOTS OF DOOM #2
Writer: Peter Hogan
Artist: Chris Sprouse
Inks: Karl Story
Letterer: Todd Klien
Colorist: Darlene Royer
Editor: Ben Abernathy
Cover: Sprouse, Story, Strachan
Previously, in Tom Strong and the Robots of Doom: It’s just another day in the life of Tom Strong and his family, as they prepare for the upcoming nuptials of Tom’s daughter, Tesla. Before he knows it, the world shifts, and Tom finds himself in a world where the Nazis won the war, and Tom’s Nazi lovin’ son, Albrecht, is the supreme leader of the world!
NAZI CHILDREN ARE THE WORST
This issue covers a lot of past history, as readers learn how Albrecht used the Dero robot army to aid in taking over the world, how the robots have “cleansed” Africa and are currently terraforming Mars. It’s a weird exchange as father and son have the discussion during a boxing match where the two power houses exchange blow after blow with neither really hurting the other.
It’s only when Tom is back in his cell do readers learn that Pneuman was never reprogrammed, has he presents Tom with a Time Harness, and our hero goes back in time to stop Albrecht before he can team with the Dero. It then becomes one of those stories where the younger meets the elder, and something strange happens to the timeline to weaken the elder. Having not read many Tom Strong adventures, I don’t know if the Dero have ever been introduced before, but even if they have, there is a tremendous amount of space used in this issue to talk about where they’ve come from, and why they are a force to fear.
I like pulp stories, and Peter Hogan serves up another fantastic installment that I’m devouring like a fat kid on ice cream. The pacing is perfect for this kind of tale, and while there aren’t a lot of major surprises, it’s the ride that is most fun. It will be interesting to see what happens when younger and elder team to defeat the evil son, and if I’m that eager for the next issue to arrive, then everyone has done their jobs perfectly.
THE PAST AND FUTURE ART
I really like it when the story and art play off each other to create a perfect reading experience. Chris Sprouse’s art is a lot of fun as his simple lines create cartoony characters that still contain a great deal of detail without going over the top or becoming muddied with an over abundance of inks. Karl Story and Darlene Royer do an excellent job bringing the pencils to life, as everything comes together wonderfully.
BOTTOM LINE: BUY IT
I really like a week when I get comics that actually surprise the heck out of me, and this week I’m two for two. Tom Strong and the Robots of Doom #2 serves up a heaping helping of sci-fi fun, and I recommend picking up a copy. We’re only at issue two of a six issue arc, but so far the story is wonderful, and earns 4.5 out of 5 Stars.