Joyride #1 (of 4)
Writers: Jackson Lanzing & Collin P. Kelly
Artist: Marcus To
In the future, Earth sucks. The stars have been blocked out for so long that people have forgotten there was anything else besides the dumb World Government Alliance watching over them, training children to join the militarized Allied Youth and eliminating all resistance with a giant ray gun. Uma Akkolyte is a girl who shoots first and leaps before she looks, and when she gets a strange message from outside the barricades of SafeSky, she jacks a spaceship and punches through the stratosphere with an unlikely crew of teens who are totally not ready for what they’re about to find.
Kill a single person, and you’re a murderer; kill a million and you’re a conqueror. So goes the thinking among some in society whether for good or for bad, and so goes the story in this second issue of the second volume of Hacktivist. Previously the series has set the gears in motion with a coordinated cyber attack of the highest order, kind of a combination of Occupy Wall Street with true terror, but the question remains where exactly does one draw the line in terms of true justice. Wall Street bankers get away with stealing millions, but a person that steals a loaf of bread to feed a family gets marched off to jail or prison. The approach of this series and the previous one is the same as the historian Lord Acton’s, that power corrupts and that absolute power corrupts absolutely. That when one works in the shades of grey that they must define their own boundaries of right and wrong or they end up on the wrong.
This issue does a good job of establishing that as fact. .SVE_URS3LF. has launched its massive attack on domestic targets, but no one is aware of who has launched this attack, at least not until now. The nameless face of the movement is revealed, but as far as comic book supervillains go she is pretty sedate, or even one that is easier to identify with. She volunteers her time to help others, even if her definition of what is legal is a little skewed. She is equal parts Nightingale and Robin Hood, and only different from many asking for social change because she takes matters into her own hands.
The part of the story showcasing this character is one of the highlights of this issue although there are others. The story continues along, keeping the reader intrigued by the cyber attacks that have been going on, but the true heart of this issue lies with its villain and it is where the story succeeds. People can be many different things, and even the best can also be the worst or vice versa, and the villain shows this. More so, this issue serves as a a great starting point to understand the problems of modern Western society, where to draw the lines of what is legal and accepted versus what is not. Indeed there are no easy answers, and neither are there any in this series. By presenting an identifiable and sympathetic villain the story gains its own grey area, and it succeeds because of it.
Story: Alyssa Milano, Colin Kelly and Jackson Lanzing Art: Marcus To
Story: 9.8 Art: 9.8 Overall: 9.8 Recommendation: Buy
Boom Studios/Archaia provided Graphic Policy with a free copy for review