Review: Arrowsmith: Behind Enemy Lines #1

Arrowsmith: Behind Enemy Lines #1

Some of the big news for 2022 is the return of Kurt Busiek to Image Comics. With numerous series coming, things kick off with a new volume of Arrowsmith, Arrowsmith: Behind Enemy Lines. I myself have never read the series so I came into this new series pretty cold only knowing the very basics. Thankfully, the experience is a solid one with it being pretty friendly to new readers.

The world of Arrowsmith takes place during World War I and instead of the heavy use of technology to wage battle, this is a world of magic featuring dragons and spells. It’s an interesting take on classic war stories with a new volume that narrows things down and keeps it simple in many ways.

The story focuses on Fletcher Arrowsmith and the comic kicks off with a mission. What’s smart is it throws the reader into the action and at the same time teaches the rules of this world. For those who are new, it’s a great way to learn how things work and what’s different in this alternate history. For those that have enjoyed what has already come out, it’s just solid action.

Busiek also takes things beyond the action making sure to focus on the human side of things. We really get to know Arrowsmith and what makes him a solid protagonist and more importantly, why we should care about him and cheer for him.

The art by Carlos Pacheco is great with a grounded style about it. What’s excellent is that even though this could just be a comic set during World War I, there’s the subtle differences, the magic and creatures, that makes it stand out. It keeps the readers on their toes to see what’s slightly “off” from our world. José Rafael Fonteriz handles the ink and José Villarrrubia does the colors and the trio deliver a look and style that’s very grounded despite it’s premise.

Arrowsmith: Behind Enemy Lines #1 is a solid start to the series with a debut issue that’s perfect for new readers. I’ve never read what has come before and knew very little but I dove right in without any issues. It’s a fun start taking a familiar concept and setting and delivering a twist. It has me not only looking forward to what’s to come but also wanting to go back and see what has already been released.

Story: Kurt Busiek Art: Carlos Pacheco
Ink: José Rafael Fonteriz Color: José Villarrubia
Story: 8.25 Art: 8.25 Overall: 8.25 Recommendation: Buy

Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review


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