Taking place before the eco-pocalypse from the original The Massive mini-series, the late limited run book from Brian Wood is dubbed The Massive: Ninth Wave, and shows what the group was like before the fall of civilization.
Although the crew of the great ship in The Massive struggled with finding a purpose in the world that fell apart in the original series, things are very different in Ninth Wave. This new mini-series stars an Earth that looks pretty much like ours does.
And while that means that cities still stand and water-levels haven’t drowned the coasts just yet, it also means that mega-corporations still run rampant. As they do, they work to unknowingly (or maybe ‘uncaringly’ would be a better word) build that dangerously soggy future Earth. Enter the crew of The Massive.
Definitely bad guys as far as monstrously-big business is concerned, the group known as Ninth Wave is as close to a superhero team as you’ll find in the world of The Massive. And here in the pre-apocalypse world, Ninth Wave battles some of the worst of the worst when it comes to “criminals, polluters, politicians, and rogue states”.
Here in the first issue, we get a taste of just what they’ll be doing in this new series. And basically, that’s sabotaging big companies who are up to no good on a world-wide scale. The story of rat first issue is pretty interesting too, and pretty much closes at the end of the book. That’s something that writer Brian Wood will be doing quite a bit of too.
Heading into this book from the original limited series, wood and Dark Horse have built a comic that will shoot for always being “done-in-one” as they put it. So what that basically means is that this is a series of one-shots, although it certainly seems as though there’ll be plenty of threads running through the bulk of the issues.
Wood keeps things tight and tidy here. The story hums along, jumping from locale to locale with a narrow focus that keeps the main thread of the tale in it sights. There’s little deviation or superfluous, tossed-in elements, as things do indeed pretty much finish up in 32 pages. As I said though, there are definitely some elements that I could see flowing on past this #1.
As for the artwork, Garry Brown carries that task for The Massive: Ninth Wave. His pencils are rough and stylized, with plenty of emotion to them. Although they’re not the most detailed images in the world, Brown’s work manages to carry across the tension of the story that’s being told nicely. It’s honestly not quite my cup of tea overall, but it works and fits the writing well.
If you read The Massive, then The Massive: Ninth Wave is a kind of prequel. Set in the world before the apocalypse of that book, Brian Wood’s latest eco-centric mini-series is set to tell one-off stories of Ninth Wave as they struggle to thwart those responsible for the future that we already know is coming and saw in The Massive.
Wood’s script is as good as ever, with solid espionage-style action and some tense moments. And although Garry Brown’s art isn’t what I typically go for (I dig more superhero-y and cartoony stuff), it gets the job done well.
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