REVIEW: Magnus, Robot Fighter #1
Sunday, August 8, 2010 - 14:32
MAGNUS, ROBOT FIGHTER #1
WRITER: Jim Shooter
ARTIST: Bill Reinhold
COLORIST: Wes Dzioba
LETTERER: Nate Piekos
COVERS: Raymond Swanland, Bill Reinhold
The highly anticipated return of Magnus was well worth the months of waiting we had to endure. Shooter’s writing and Reinhold’s art perfectly capture the spirit of Manning’s 60’s-70’s era original series, while avoiding the juvenile themes that make that series by today’s standards seem naïve and even quaint.
Solar #1 missed the mark, but Magnus is a solid hit both in writing and art. The world of 4000AD is a utopia if you happen to live in the upper tiers of the continent spanning cities. If you’re a so-called goph living on the ground and lower tiers of the cities, life is not so good. I found it interesting that Shooter chose to focus on the social disparities so early in this series. I’ll be interested to see where he takes this social disparity thread and how he contrasts it with the apparent decadence of the populace of the upper tiers and with the morality of enslaving sentient robots.
Reinhold’s art is evocative of the classic Manning art with some modern and more intricate twists. Swanland’s cover art is impressive – some of the best Magnus art I’ve ever seen – and I’ve been a Magnus fan since the 60’s. As origin tales go, this was a good story for re-introducing us to all the main characters of Magnus’ world including Magnus, 1-A, Leeja Clane, Senator Clane, and, of course, robots. As a special feature, Magnus #1 (1963) written and illustrated by Manning is reprinted at the back of this issue.
Shooter has managed to capture the magic of the series and update just enough to hold the interest of the more mature modern comics reading audience.