Just when things seemed like they couldn’t get any worse for Benjamin, and Tara, the beastly creatures of The Pride show up to make sure they don’t make it off Earth alive. Will this cadre of hostile alien foes spell certain doom for our intrepid heroes?
Grand Poobah: Stan Lee
Writer: Chris Roberson
Artist: Khary Randolph
Colors: Mitch Gerads
Letters: Ed Dukeshire
Covers: Humberto Ramos, and Gene Ha
Graphic Designer: Brian Latimer
Editor: Bryce Carlson
Cover Price: $3.99 USD
Previously, in Starborn: Benjamin Warner, a aspiring Science Fiction author, as well as heir to a galactic throne, comes to realize that the Universe he has been building with every free moment is very much real, and deadly. With revelation that his childhood love, Tara Takamoto, is really his otherworldly shape shifting bodyguard, the two set off to get off world as soon as possible with a mounting alien horde nipping at their heels.
WE’VE GOT TO GET OUT OF THIS PLACE
Surrounded by The Pride, a race of animalistic aliens look like FALLOUT’s Deathclaws, bred with HALO’s Brutes, Benjamin and Tara clearly are outgunned, and on the verge of annihilation, at their hands. But with Tara being a highly trained member of the shape shifting warrior cult the Crimson Hand, awestruck Benjamin can hang back, and let the her keep them both alive. But Benjamin realizes that he has to muster up the courage, and get it together so they might have a chance to make it out alive, because Tara can’t do it all by herself. Mustering the courage Benjamin joins the fray, and peters out less than five minutes into the fight.
This issue is a action oriented one. There is hand to hand combat, laser fire, and many explosions, but that does not mean there is no story to go along with it. Within the issue is a primer of sorts about two of the races trying to kill Ben, The Pride, and The Witches of Arbor. This follows a helpful pattern from the previous issues, where the beings after Ben and Tara get a moment in the spotlight.
This being the fourth issue, and the end of the first story arc, you’d think by now Ben would just believe that things he thought he created are real, and out to kill him, his inability to accept what’s going on as a fact of life is getting to become annoying. But, maybe down the road Ben will begin to think he is in some sort of coma, or this is all a hallucination.
BIG BOOM, BIG BOOM
Khary Randolph’s art is not something that I devour but will give it the kudos it deserves for fitting the sci-fi/fantasty tone that the book has already set up. Each and every character that Khary has illustrated has had their own voice, they emote very well, and move accordingly to their body type, and are never boring to look at. My only complaint out of all the artwork Khary has produced in the issue, is the forced perspective shots. On page 5 there is a shot where Ben is contemplating how to use the Gauntlet to assist Tara in the fight with The Pride, the use of Forced Perspective doesn’t work so well, and being used in nearly every issue, could lead to a groan, and head roll moment.
But not dwelling on that minor slight, and looking at how everything is able click together like a artful machine, I will have no problem taking in Khary’s line work for the near future.
WE CAME, WE SAW
Reading all four issues back to back in one sitting, I will say that this issue is a great capstone to the first arc, and fully paid off in the end. The writing is solid, the concept is quite different, without being wholly unrelatable, the artwork not only holds it’s own, it flourishes within this concept.
Overall the whole Starborn Universe is a massive undertaking, but it’s not head scratchingly frustrating, and a Universe I can’t wait to see where it takes me next.
Final Verdict, Starborn #4 receives 3.5 Stars, out of 5.