In Far Cry #1, Diego turns thirteen, and for a present, his father, el Presidente Castillo takes him for a little trip to teach him about morality. What he finds instead is a ruined house filled with weapons. Who gets it in the neck? Find out in your next mighty Major Spoilers review!
FAR CRY #1
Writer: Bryan Edward Hill
Artist: Geraldo Borges
Colorist: Michael Atiyeh
Letterer: Richard Starkings & Jimmy Betancourt
Editor: Freddye Miller
Publisher: Dark Horse Comics
Release Date: May 19th, 2021
Previously in Far Cry: You can’t keep a good el Presidente down, especially when he wants to teach his now thirteen year old son the ropes – and in this instance, the ropes involve learning how to keep a boot on the necks of your people, now, tomorrow and well into the future. Young Diego looks up to his father, Anton Castillo, but fears his father’s cruel tyranny over his people. Now old enough to be taught how to rule, Castillo takes his son on something of a road trip to learn how to keep them down, while they stay up…
DEMOCRACY IS THE LEAST WORST OPTION…
The modern computer game industry is a vast behemoth swiftly rising to challenge the film industry as the premiere visual experience for audiences around the world. Far Cry #1 adapts the Ubisoft title Far Cry 6 and it proves to be an interesting experiment.
It is a more or less competent effort that, like a lot of tie-in material, takes the best elements and weaves them into something new. Young Diego has just turned thirteen, and to help celebrate, his father, who happens to be the President of their little island republic, and a dictator to boot, has decided that his son needs to learn how to run a fascist dictatorship. In between flashbacks that feel a little disconnected to the main story, we get to see a glimmer of the nightmare choice Diego’s father is about to impose on him.
Turning a computer game, with its multiple possible storylines and characters, into a straight ahead narrative story shorn of its different possibilities, seems like a reductive choice to make. It does bring coherency to a sprawling possible narrative, but doing so does take the fun out of the experience for the reader. That said, what Bryan Hill does with the plot is craft a comprehensive plot out of what might’ve been a tangled nightmare.
With that said, the double narrative here, with Diego and his father journeying further into the jungle, interposed with a morality play his father relates to him, provides nothing new or exciting for the reader. A dictator attempting to justify the way he rules and why is common fodder in fiction today – heck, it’s common fodder in real life. The flashbacks, involving a young man attempting to battle his demons, are the more interesting aspect of Far Cry #1.
Hill uses these flashbacks to help Diego’s father, Anton Castillo, help his son understand that to be a true leader, one must be true to oneself. It mostly works, though there are times where the intent behind the flashback gets lost in the writing itself. There is one killer line, though, that everyone should take to heart: You are either the blade that is sharpened on the stone, or you are the stone that sharpens someone else.’
VOTE EARLY, VOTE OFTEN
Geraldo Borges artwork is very good. He captures the internal turmoil and contradictions of our flashback protagonist, who goes through different phases as he grows up, eventually settling on a no-nonsense exploiter of his fellow man, and looks the part, with mohawk and bulked up physique. Character design is distinctive, with Diego almost girlish with his longer hair, compared to his stripped back father who reeks of power and cruelty. Michael Atiyeh is also noteworthy – a lot of scenes are shaded in rusty reds and browns, to indicate the spilling of blood or violence is only just bubbling beneath the surface. In concert, these two create a distinctive imagery for Far Cry #1.
BOTTOM LINE: ALL HAIL THE REVOLUTION
Adaptations of previous media always face the problem that you can’t satisfy everyone who loved the material that inspired this new version. Far Cry #1 takes, from what I can see, the best elements of the Far Cry 6, and melds them into a comprehensible tale that concentrates on the strongest aspects of the story. While the reader can’t engage in a first person shooter with this title, the lure of understanding what makes a dictator tick, and how a man becomes a monster, is certainly attractive.
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Far Cry #1
An epic retelling of an epic game - Far Cry!