What happens when you are immortal and are forced to watch the world progress around you? What do you do to pass the time when you have seen warfare go from spears to guns? These questions are answered in The Old Guard: Force Multiplied #1 by Image Comics!
THE OLD GUARD: FORCE MULTIPLIED #1 (OF 5)
Writer: Greg Rucka
Artist: Leandro Fernandez
Colorist: Daniel Miwa
Letterer: Jodi Wynne
Editor: Alejandro Arbona
Publisher: Image Comics
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: December 18th, 2019
Previously in The Old Guard: Welcome to the second story featuring these characters. These immortal creatures have lived 6,500 years and have mastered every form of battle from axe fighting to advanced guns. But when you lived this long, there are always people out to get you and you must always watch your back.
STARTING WITH A BANG
There are five immortals in the world and the issue begins by talking about the first battle they participated in and the emotions that persist. We cut to modern day with Andy and Nile running away from police officers in stolen sports cars. Prior to this, Andy, Nile, Joe, and Nicky are raiding a mansion to escort some people away from their captors. My concern here was that I wasn’t sure if they were doing an act of good or an act of evil in their actions. What I do know is that this mission involves Andy killing one of the guards and leads into a huge action filled chase scene.
To escape from the police, they flip their car to cause an explosion and jump off a bridge. With their immorality, they survived the crash relatively unscathed and returned back to the party. Meanwhile in Marseille, Booker is headed back to his apartment drunk. Being in a state of inebriation, he is unable to fight back the people waiting for him. Kidnapped, he is taken to a boat and questioned about the “others”. When he did not answer his questions, he is chained by the neck.
LOSS OF FREEDOM
At the beginning of the issue, Andy has a lot of emotions and this had to do with the treatment of the losers. It is referenced that the people who lost that first battle were prisoners and potentially even slaves. This comes back around with Booker who loses a fight and is met with the same treatment. History is often written by the victors and it seems like the theme of this book attempts to shine a light on the losers. The consequences of war is an unspoken topic and it will be interesting to see a spotlight on it.
Despite the ideas presented in the beginning and the end of the book, the middle felt like filler. I didn’t think we got a lot of characterization nor explanation on what was actually happening. The action scenes were cool but I’m unsure if they really developed the plot at all. I wanted just a tad more depth here. A tad more explanation. However the scenes, while superficial, were very well drawn. I loved that in the action I can see the cause and effect of every moment. Because they stole the cars, they were being chased. Because the car exploded, they were able to get away. There were no surprises here and again the art was incredible.
BOTTOM LINE: A LOT OF POTENTIAL
The theme has so much potential to tell a great story but I hope it is not ignored in favor of action scenes. I like a good action book but I want those scenes to help develop a narrative and develop a theme. This is a good book and has a lot of potential but it did lack a certain finesse. I will be picking up issue 2 to see if it picks up but I’m not completely sold at the moment. This book would be good on the big screen and I’m excited to see that it will soon be a movie! 3.5 out of 5 stars for The Old Guard: Force Multiplied #1 by Image Comics.
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The Old Guard: Force Multiplied #1