Monday, October 3, 2011

Night Force (1982) #1

Night Force #1 (August 1982)
Single Issue
DC Comics

Supernatural teams have been a recurring element of DC over the years, from the unofficial Trenchcoat Brigade to the Shadowpact to the new Justice League: Dark. The first one to get their own series, to the best of my knowledge, was the Night Force, in the early 1980s.

Unfortunately, despite a creative team with a fair bit of cachet (Marv Wolfman and Gene Colan), this first issue was rather disappointing. Wolfman and Colan never really seem to gel, and my gut is that the blame for this lies largely with Woflman's script: the transitions between scenes are awkward, made worse by the fact that they often take place in the middle of a page with no indication, requiring you to puzzle it out.

There's also not enough going on in the story -- it's a proto-example of what would come to be known (and, in some corners, derided) as decompression. You get introduced to the people who will make up the Night Force, the Baron (the fellow looking over the others on the cover) says something cryptic, unseen bad guys say something cryptic... The End.

Not really worth it unless you're a big fan of Colan or Wolfman.

Edited to Add: I neglected to mention when I first wrote this up, but I find it odd that on the second page of this code-approved comic, two of the characters are discussing open marriages. I guess I hadn't realized how progressive times were back in the early 80s.

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