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Image Comics reinvents ‘Prophet’

Image
J. Caleb Mozzocco
Prophet #21, aaacc

The Details

Prophet #21
Three stars
By Brandon Graham and Simon Roy
Directed by Stephen Daldry
Image Comics, $2.99

During the early-’90s comics boom, no one was more popular than artist Rob Liefeld, despite the significant shortcomings of his work, obvious to anyone who wasn’t a pre-teen boy at the time. Those boys have grown up quite a bit since then, and so have comics. Even, it turns out, Liefeld’s comics … especially when he’s not the one making them.

Exhibit A: Prophet #21, the best of a series of new Image Comics in which Liefeld-created characters and concepts are given to talented young creators for reinvention. The new Prophet takes greater inspiration from European sci-fi comics than American superheroes. The cipher of a hero, a human being who wakes up on a wild, post-human Earth ruled by highly evolved monsters, has the blatantly mythological task of climbing a tower to awaken the “G.O.D.” satellite that orbits the now-alien world.

It’s a comic about a guy with a blade and gadgets fighting monsters, but it’s a sophisticated one, deftly told. More ’90s nostalgia should similarly incorporate the maturity that comes with age, rather than simply reveling in the past.

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