Saturday, 22 February 2014

Quantum and Woody #8 Review (James Asmus, Ming Doyle)

The brilliant second arc in the newly relaunched Quantum and Woody comes to a suitably barmy conclusion in Q&W #8. It’s crazy Blackwater-esque private military contractor Magnum Security vs. crazy hillbilly survivalists/Quantum fans for a showdown in the middle of Montana - with Q&W on the side of the hillbillies!?

James Asmus is writing a superhero comic filled with action but knows the selling point of the series is the comedy and the Odd Couple relationship between Eric and Woody, of which we fans get bucket-loads of in this issue. One minute Woody’s pointing at a chubby redneck with a crossbow and calling him Fatniss Everdeen and the next they’re debating the merits of being a Republican which - shocker! - Eric reveals himself to be.

Asmus has been heavy on mocking the politically right-wing - which is fair in a story where the rednecks have declared their weird little group a sovereign nation - but makes them appear sane and human with Eric. Real Republicans are worth listening to, not the hyper-religious, anti-intellectual kind you find in groups like the Tea Party, and Eric is a fine example of one.

There are too many gems in Asmus’ script to point out in this review (though in one panel their relationship felt exactly like Harrison Ford and Sean Connery’s in The Last Crusade) but suffice it to say that whether your bag is physical comedy or witty humour, Asmus has you covered. And there’s tons of awesome action too!

Ming Doyle’s artwork continues to impress especially with the way she draws Q&W’s emotive facial expressions, a factor that’s crucial to pulling off the humour in Asmus’ writing. I also love that the onomatopoeia in this comic reflects the action of the panel - when Fatniss Everdeen bites it, the noise caption is “FAT-DOOOOOM!” and when Woody takes out a tank it’s “BA-DAAAASSS!”.

As this is the final issue in this story arc, if you’re new to the series I’d wait for the trade to pick this up and then jump on the next issue, but Quantum and Woody is definitely worth following if you love smart, funny comics. Quantum and Woody #8 is an absolute treat in a series that has been near-flawless.

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