Wednesday, 29 April 2015

Ivar Timewalker, Volume 1: Making History Review (Fred Van Lente, Clayton Henry)

Of the three Anni-Padda brothers, Ivar is definitely the most boring. Armstrong is a drunken adventurer, Gilad is a fighter - Ivar is basically a museum docent. He “walks” through time with people, showing them history, not altering it, and then doing it all over again. Well, lucky us for getting a whole series of that! 

Fred Van Lente is best-placed to write this, not just because he’s the Archer and Armstrong writer, but because of his indie series Action Philosophers where he could apply that informative style to Ivar Timewalker. Unfortunately the demands of the book means that he can barely touch on some of the interesting subjects here - The Battle of Trafalgar, the plot to assassinate Hitler - before lapsing into heavily expositional scenes on the utterly dull time-travel story. 

Ivar’s got to save the inventor of time-travel, Neela Sethi, from Prometheans, artificial suicide life from the fifth dimension or something so it’s “time” to quickly jump from one era to another! 

The comic was flat boring. Ivar is barely a character, he’s some suave-ish dude who travels through time like a personality-free Doctor Who, while Neela basically becomes the main character. Who’s Neela? The better question is, who cares? Predictably they go back in time to see about killing Hitler before he rose to power, then things go off the rails once time-travel and all the usual tropes are trotted out. What if we do this, will it change that, blah blah blah. It’s so damn boring.

Clayton Henry’s art is fine, some of the historical scenes are ok, but generally I read this with my eyes half-closed - that’s the thing with time-travel stories: once you’ve read a few, they all blend together and I felt like I’d read this before at least a hundred times. I wasn’t much of a fan of time-travel stories to begin with but Ivar Timewalker’s dreary series has only cemented my opinions against this very limited sub-genre.

Ivar Timewalker, Volume 1: Making History

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