A beloved Silver Age comic concept gets a modern reboot, but will it live up to the history? Your Major Spoilers review of Dial H For Hero #1 awaits!
Writer: Sam Humphries
Artist: Joe Quinones
Colorist: Joe Quinones
Letterer: Dave Sharpe
Editor: Mike Cotton and Andy Khouri
Publisher: DC Comics/Wonder Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: March 27, 2019
Previously in Dial H For Hero: Miguel, a teen daredevil, becomes the newest wielder of the Hero Dial, a rotary phone-like device that grants the user superpowers for one hour when they dial H-E-R-O. Will he rise as a new hero in the DC Universe or crumble under the weight of responsibility the dial thrusts upon him?
THE H-DIAL HAS RETURNED!
This issue starts as a letter to Superman from a young man named Miguel, who once had a close encounter with injury that led to the Man of Steel flying him to the hospital. In the years since, he has spent much of his free time trying to recapture the buzz of flying with a superhero, engaging in more and more dangerous daredevil stunts in the attempt. Though he lives with and works for his uncle after something unspoken happened to his parents, Miguel longs for something more than days spent working on a food truck, and when he foolishly agrees to ride his bike down a rickety ramp with the cool kids, he ends up thrown into the canyon that gives his small town its name. As he falls to certain doom, Miguel is visited by a glowing… telephone? A mysterious voice implores him to “DIAL H!” and save his life, but as soon as he does, we cut to various places across the DC Universe as Robin, Lobo, Snapper Carr, Harley Quinn, Angel and the Ape and Alfred Pennyworth all feel the call of the H-Dial, while Miguell is transformed into…. MONSTER TRUCK!
BUT WHAT IS THE THUNDERBOLT CLUB?
This issue also gives some shadowy back story (though not the first such) for the H-Dial, as the voice identified itself as The Operator, warning him that he must protect the Dial from evil agents who want it, even at the cost of his own life! Perhaps the best part of this issue for me is the art, especially the alternate cover, featuring a legion of previously-dialed hero forms. The moment wherein Miguel’s bike catches a roughshod nail and flings him headlong to certain death is beautiful, but even quiet moments in the Mayo Madness food truck are interesting and well-drawn. The story also has some great moments, and I’m interested in seeing where this kid ends up going and finding out more about his past and his destiny. As someone who has loved Dial H For Hero since the 1980s, this book upholds the spirit of Robby Reed’s original adventures (Monster Truck is cool, retro and goofy all at once) while feeling very modern and accessible.
BOTTOM LINE: I’M INTERESTED
In short, this book hits the sweet spot for me, combining the kitschy Silver Age concept with a modern take (and a really cool jacket) to make something new and exciting. Dial H For Hero #1 is well-drawn and well-written, reviving a classic concept in a cool way, making for a number one issue that is so successful it makes me a little sad that the book is only a limited series, earning 4 out of 5 stars overall. I definitely recommend this book to fans of the original and to those looking for a fun, accessible read.
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DIAL H FOR HERO #1
The success of any Dial H story is in the heroes dialed and this one doesn't disappoint on that front, but it also has stellar art and an interesting plot to keep readers hooked.