Review: Dreaming Eagles #1

Dreaming Eagles #1 CoverInspired by true events, Dreaming Eagles tells the story of the first African American fighter pilots to join the United States Army Air Force in WWII and whose humble beginnings in Tuskegee, Alabama propelled them into the deadly skies above Adolf Hitler’s Third Reich. Not only were they instrumental against the Nazi war machine, but also braved an equally great challenge, overcoming everyday bigotry amongst their fellow American soldiers as well as civilians at home. High in the heavens, they fought a battle that would change their country and their world forever.

Writer Garth Ennis is an industry legend for his output, and for all of his well known series like Preacher, The Boys, and Hellblazer, he’s been putting out some amazing war comics, especially set in World War II.

This one is a bit interesting in that Ennis not only takes on some real world events, but also dives in to race relations and the Civil Rights movement. I haven’t read everything he’s done, so not sure if he’s touched upon those latter subjects, and I’m not a history expert, so not sure how he handled the former. So, going into the first issue, I’ll admit I was nervous, because this is easy to mess up (and there’s a few examples of comics just this year alone of that). I have to say, I’m pretty impressed with the first issue and he seems to handle those topics well.

The issue doesn’t go into a massive amount of depth, but it seems to big picture handle the issues of integration in the army and the Civil Rights movement well so far, tying the two together with a nice generational tale. Expecting a few moments of wincing, there wasn’t one. The only criticism I’ll say about the subject is that it’d be great to see some resources folks can go to so they can learn more about the actual history the comic is based on.

The art by Simon Coleby is nice and does a great job depicting each character as an individual so that you can really tell the difference between characters. The details Coleby ads helps with the comic’s historical aspect as the art helps place you there. The coloring too differentiates between the eras with World War II being a bit brighter than the 60s.

I will say, I was really surprised by the comic. Ennis does great war comics, but throwing in racial aspects really makes this one stand out. It also impressively makes me want to see how close it is to actual history as far as the war. It’s a comic that makes me want to learn. This comic has been the surprise of the week for me. Absolutely check it out.

Story: Garth Ennis Art: Simon Coleby
Story: 9.1 Art: 8.6 Overall: 9.1 Recommendation: Buy