Review: Secret Coders Vol. 4 Robots & Repeats

Dr. One-Zero has added a new class to Stately Academy’s curriculum. But in “Advanced Chemistry,” they only teach one lesson: how to make Green Pop! While their classmates are manufacturing this dangerous soda, the Coders uncover a clue that may lead them to Hopper’s missing dad. Is it time to use Professor Bee’s most powerful weapon: the Turtle of Light?

Writer Gene Luen Yang and artist Mike Holmes again deliver an entertaining graphic novel in Secret Coders: Robots & Repeats, but that’s expected as each volume before has impressed effortlessly blending entertainment and education. For those who are unaware of the series, it follows three kids as they attempt to figure out the mystery of their school and eventually battle a villain, but they do so by learning computer programming skills.

What’s fantastic is that Yang teaches the reader as well, explaining each thing clearly and lessons build upon the last, exactly as you would in school. That education is wrapped up in a fun story that’s perfect for kids and adults alike. Even this adult has learned some stuff and taken part in the lesson “breaks” in between each chapter.

Holmes’ art has been great for each issue keeping things simple in a green, black, and white hue that has a geeky energy about it. The style, not quite sure what to call it, has a youthful fun about it all that reminds me of some of the latter 90s kids cartoons and every character has personality in how they look and act. There’s a minimal design in a way about the book but that lets you focus on the tasks at hand and the clues presented. Holmes’ also does an excellent job of creating pages where the programming is front and center while still moving the story forward. The two are blended in a way that feels natural, as if just regular dialogue.

Another fantastic entry into the series, one that I constantly recommend for parents to get their children. It’s education and entertainment together but done so in a way where you don’t know you’re learning. Can’t wait for the next volume in what is an absolute modern classic graphic novel series.

Story: Gene Luen Yang Art: Mike Holmes
Story: 10 Art: 10 Overall: 10 Recommendation: Buy

:01 First Second provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review