Friday, March 16, 2012

Reviews- Atomika Vol. 1 and Vol. 2

ATOMIKA VOL. 1: GOD IS RED (Mercury, 2006; Softcover)

Collects Atomika Nos. 1-6 (cover dates March, 2005- January, 2006)

Writer: Sal Abbinanti and Andrew Dabb

Artists: Sal Abbinanti

I really enjoyed this the first time that I read it, and I had to pull it out and re-read it since so much time has passed between volumes. This was every bit as good on the re-read. I love the cold, oppressive feel of Sal Abbinanti's artwork. He's not Russian, but his art sure makes it look like he is. Atomika looks and feels like nothing else on the market today.

The OCD zone- The paper stock is nice, but the covers in the back of the book rather than chapter markers makes my OCD signals turn yellow. This is fortunately rectified in Vol. 2. 

ATOMIKA VOL. 2: GOD IS RED BOOK TWO (Mercury, 2012; Softcover)

Collects Atomika Nos. 7-12 (cover dates December, 2006- 2011)

Writer: Andrew Dabb

Artist: Sal Abbinanti

After a few years, I finally got to read the second half of the first arc! It was worth the wait. (Mild spoiler-ish snippets ahead.) Atomika believes himself to be a God, and he may well be, but he was a God without wisdom or humility (if Gods can be said to have humility). He learns humility, compassion, and the wisdom that can only come by being a parent. This is both heady stuff and a fun, punch 'em up superhero-esque romp. The concept of a God growing up and maturing is interesting to say the least.

I can only hope that both trade paperbacks get reissued as a deluxe hardcover down the road. I recommend Atomika to the connoisseur of fine comic books as well as the comic book layman who prefer their funny books to be more mainstream. It works as both.

This book was not released through Diamond due to their unfair, anti-competitive discrimination of small press publishers. Monopolies suck. It can be ordered online here. My copy arrived in just a few days, and in prefect condition. 

The OCD zone- Not only are the covers in their 'proper' chapter marker locations, but they have the actual trade dress on them! I love it when they show the logo and cover price. In this day of digital separations, trade dress for covers are typically not shown on collections of modern comic books. Most people that I have talked to prefer the latter, but I'll take the authentic comic book look over that any day.

The paper is a nicer stock than Vol. 1, and has more of a sheen to it. It captures the color better than the paper in Vol. 1. 
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  1. You mean since Diamond didn't distribute it that there might be a super low print run?