Ignited #1 kicks off the new H1 line of comics from Humanoids. H1 is a new connected superhero universe. It features and boasts a murderer’s row of creators. Beyond the initial Free Comic Book Day release, I went in pretty cold as to what to expect from this debut issue.
It’s the first day back at Phoenix Academy High, but this year there’s no back to school excitement in the air as returning students and faculty are haunted by memories of last year’s horrific attack. So many friends and colleagues were lost, and some of those who survived underwent changes; they Ignited, gaining supernatural abilities they barely understand.
Written by Mark Waid and Kwanza Osajyefo, Ignited #1 feels like Pump Up the Volume for the mass shooting age. The first issue is socially relevant and I’m sure will make people feel uncomfortable. What it doesn’t do is feel like it exploits real world situations for enjoyment. Instead, the issue focuses on the impact of a mass shooting on the students and by focusing on their return to school. Waid and Osajyefo build a tension throughout the issue. Then figure out how to alleviate that tension.
By issue’s end, you discover the series is so much more than what has been presented creating a magical fantasy grounded in harsh reality.
The art by Philippe Briones is solid. The characters, even in the background, all have personality of their own. The students look like students. The art helps creates tension. Especially when tragedy is shown. But, what’s most important is, it all seems normal until the very end.
Ignited #1 plants a flag for H1 Comics. It shows the line isn’t afraid to touch upon real world issues. It shows it’s not afraid to touch upon controversial issues and take a stand. This comic will piss a lot of people off for that. And they’ll be the ones missing out and what is the beginning of an intriguing new world.
Story: Mark Waid, Kwanza Osajyefo (A) Philippe Briones
Story: 9.0 Art: 8.0 Overall: 8.7 Recommendation: Buy
Humanoids provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review