Review: THE FOX VOL. 1: FREAK MAGNET

Review: THE FOX VOL. 1: FREAK MAGNET

Review: THE FOX VOL. 1: FREAK MAGNET

The first volume of "The Fox" is now available in comic shops everywhere. Find out what I thought of it in my latest review.


 

THE FOX VOL. 1: FREAK MAGNET by Dean Haspiel and Mark Waid
Collects The Fox #1-5
 
I'm largely unfamiliar with Red Circle characters, so when I received a copy of The Fox #5 for review a few months back I didn't quite know what to make of it. I was thrust into the concluding chapter of what was obviously an ambitious story arc and, while I thought the material was good, I understandably wasn't able to follow it that well. Now that I've read the entire arc that has been collected into this handsome volume, I have a much greater appreciation for it and am willing to share my thoughts with you. If you too are unfamiliar with The Fox and his buddies, you need not worry because the creative team hits the ground running and gives you all you need to know to enjoy this crazy adventure.
 
The Fox himself is a great, quirky superhero that is hard to not fall in love with. His journey begins with a seemingly normal interview with MyFace co-developer Lucy Fur (do you get the feeling she's not to be trusted?) that takes a wrong turn as she shows her true face in the form of Madame Satan. I swear that's not a King Diamond album. The battle that ensues is an absolute riot.
 
Soon after, he is tasked by the linguistically challenged Queen of Diamonds to venture to the Diamond Empire to bring her husband back to the land of sanity. What follows is a wildly imaginative high fantasy, psychedelic journey that is the wackiest superhero comic this side of Grant Morrison. The supporting cast is so wonderfully rich that there is never a dull moment within these pages.
 
Let's not forget to mention the creative team who absolutely knocks it out of the park. Dean Haspiel has a knack for choreographing action, delivering one fabulous layout after another, yet doesn't skimp on subtleties. There's no shortage of varying facial expressions. Brian Bolland would be proud.
 
Joining him is one of the greatest and most beloved comic book writers of the past quarter century: Mark Waid. Mr. Waid's vast knowledge of comic book history is put to good use here, as he seemingly knows every character in the four color pantheon inside and out. If you were a fan of his JLA run, then you can't afford to miss this. It's kind of like a more mature version of Batman: The Brave and the Bold. Another legend, J.M. DeMatteis drops by to pen backup stories featuring the patriotic hero The Shield as well as the book's final chapter. The main and backup stories eventually converge at the end, so you shouldn't skip anything.
 
As for the concluding chapter,I'm still not crazy about the idea of characters combining to form one living being (Unity, in this story), but I had an easier time of accepting it after reading the complete story. It all comes together in a neat little package and I applaud all those involved. Supplemental material includes a foreword, afterword, epilogue, a brief history of The Fox, and profiles of supporting characters. See, didn't I tell you this volume was good at informing the uninitiated? If you're looking for a great superhero book outside of the big two, you can't go wrong with this one. Score: 8.5/10
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