Review: Battling Boy
The adventure begins in the new graphic novel by comics legend Paul Pope. Monsters roam through Arcopolis, swallowing children into the horrors of their shadowy underworld. Only one man is a match for them – the genius vigilante Haggard West. Unfortunately, Haggard West is dead and Arcopolis is desperate.
When Battling Boy’s father (a warrior god) drops him on a world infested with bloodthirsty monsters, he leaves his son with nothing but a magic credit card, a trunk full of enchanted tee shirts, and instructions not to come home until he’s liberated the planet from its plague of monsters.
It’s one kid versus an entire world full of monsters – and the monsters don’t stand a chance.
I went into Battling Boy, not knowing what to expect. I read a blurb about a new super hero story, and thought it sounded interesting. After reading it, I couldn’t stop recommending it, and now everyone has a chance to read this graphic novel that gives us a hero, and story, that competes with the big two publishers.
While Battling Boy himself, and the world he comes from, might not be the most original, there’s something beyond fun in this graphic novel that had me sitting and reading it through all at once. It’s exactly what comic books should be, entertaining, fun, accessible to all, and appropriate for more than just adults. A lot of the story is familiar, including the villains that I can’t quite put my finger on. There’s so much great moments and material here, the graphic novel as a whole feels like a homage and love letter to pulp comics of the past. It works, so well, I want to see more of it!
The worst thing I can say about it? I didn’t know this was the first volume (of I hope many). I got to the end, which was rather abrupt not knowing the story was to continue. I wanted to read more right away!
I chose this as one of my picks this week and I seriously suggest skipping other purchases to grab this one, it’s that damn good. Battling Boy enters some tough competition for graphic novel of the year, but it’ll definitely be in contention when I make my choices and I expect it to be on a lot of “best of” lists.
Story: Paul Pope Art: Paul Pope
Story: 9.5 Art: 9.5 Overall: 9.5 Recommendation: Buy
First Second provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review