Man-Thing isn’t a character I know a ton about. Usually the interactions are either as a secondary character there as a plot device or there’s a misunderstanding and a brief battle with heroes fighting him. “Curse of the Man-Thing” is a three-part miniseries that celebrates the character’s 50th anniversary kicking off with Avengers: Curse of the Man-Thing #1.
Written by Steve Orlando, the comic kicks off with unexpected characters in Hordeculture, a group of zealot botanists that were introduced in the rebooted X-Men line. The group has a goal of depopulation, though not total destruction, of humanity to better balance the world. And while they’re extreme, there’s always someone more extreme. Enter Harrower who wants to mix science and magic to make the world better, putting her in conflict with Hordeculture. Harrower has a plan, and that’s to use Man-Thing to bring about her vision for the world.
Orlando does some things really smart in this comic. While it could easily use Man-Thing as a prop, instead Orlando explores the character. We get to learn more about Man-Thing and the scientist that created him. We also learn about the project that lead to the creation as well. There’s also some twists that would be spoilers that does a decent dive into the character. I came out feeling like I had a solid understanding of the character.
Francesco Mobili‘s art is solid mixing the feel of a superhero comic and a horror comic as well. Weird organic towers and bugs flying around clash with the Avengers doing battle. It’s an interesting mix walking a balance between the two genres. Guru-eFX‘s colors deliver a more bright look to what could easily have been a darkened vibe and Clayton Cowles‘ lettering emphasizes the action and chaos. The art really captures the mix of genres. There’s a big budget disaster story sense about it all and its emphasis of showing the horror of those experiencing events enhances the popcorn enjoyment of it all.
Avengers: Curse of the Man-Thing #1 might seem like a lot of action and a disaster film on its surface. Orlando delivers more than that. There’s a real exploration of the character and some of the motivations behind it. There’s a tragedy that’s played out and it’ll be interesting to see how this all continues in the next two chapters.
Story: Steve Orlando Art: Francesco Mobili
Color: Guru-eFX Letterer: Clayton Cowles
Story: 8.0 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.0 Recommendation: Buy
Marvel provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review