Power Man and Iron Fist are possibly the best known buddy super heroes. It’s hard to even think Power Man without Iron Fist popping up in my head. I didn’t even know a new series for them was happening until just a few hours ago. I had to rush out and get my greedy little hands on a what I imagined would be a good time book! Let’s see how it went.
Writer: David Walker
Artist: Sanford Greene
Quick Review: Like I said, I was looking for a good time buddy book. I don’t feel that happened. Instead I got a book about a guy, Luke Cage, who was really annoyed about being obligated with a friend he outgrew. Seriously, if this were a sit-com it would be the one where the husband has to hang out with his wife’s obnoxious kid brother for the day. So, much for buddy fun. The plot was basically getting our out-of-character heroes to a needless fight scene that merely served as a way to heavy handedly push the plot along so that other characters I’m not familiar with could get a MacGuffin. So, if you want to read a comic with bickering, gullible super-heroes this might be for you. Not so much for me.
Spoilers Lurk Below
Analysis: I cannot say I am an old school Power Man and Iron Fist fan. I’ve read a decent amount of Iron Fists early appearances and some of the volume one comics. Not enough to be fluent in them or anything. But I have read almost all of their appearances (especially of Iron Fist) for the past decade. I can’t really say the personalities on display in this comic match the characters I’ve been reading for a while. I know that doesn’t bother some, but it bothers me when personalities get discarded so easily.
Also, I’m showing my age. When Jennie shows up, I couldn’t remember when or where she was from. Apparently it was the pretty forgettable Power Man and Iron Fist mini with the replacement Power Man. Huh. But where I am showing my age, is I really wanted those old school editors notes to tell me what issues the references story took place in. Same with Black Mariah. No idea who she is and this story did little to arouse my curiosity.
Really it lost me with Tombstone. I like myself some Tombstone, but in my head he is always drawn by Sal Buscema. Here, I’ll admit, I was distracted that he was drawn so rounded. Although I appreciated that his whisper talk was back. But this scene, and its pointless fight, just lost me. To sum up, PM & IF show up and try to retrieve a necklace they heard Tombstone collected as debt owed to him. They, oh so politely, try to explain. Tombstone, stubbornly, feels that they are spreading lies about him and gets a fight going. It’s just a poorly done scene. There never feels like there is any reason to fight.
If I had to explain it, I would say that Walker couldn’t come up with a way for our heroes to gain the necklace proactively without resulting to unheroic measures. So, instead he had Tombstone attack with no provocation which allows for PM&IF to take hold of the necklace. Then they get to call Tombstone a liar and feel like heroes. This was the centerpiece of the issue, and it was absurd.
I almost don’t want to judge the art. I guess it was okay. It had a sort of Image, Chew look too it but without as much skill or fun. And everything looks brown. But, when the story is so mired with flaws, it colors my perception of the art. Which, probably shows my weakness as a reviewer. If this story were a fun buddy romp, maybe this art would go well with it. As a dull, not-quite-noir piece, I don’t think the fit is there.
Wrap-Up: To say something positive, I liked the gag about Luke Cage not swearing so as to not influence his baby. This is something on my mind since I have a 9-month old boy. But, Then I started thinking, Cage is a character whose catch phrase is “Sweet Christmas.” And he’s married to Jessica Jones. Is he really the potty mouth of the family?