It was painful for me to read The Infinite #1. Not because it isn’t a fairly entertaining read as buddy teams, time travels and Space Hitlers go. No, it was a realization that this is the first Rob Liefeld art I have seen since his takeover of New Mutants and Marvel’s art style years ago.
Here in this Image book is a fine example of what used to be Marvel’s house style, based on Liefeld’s popularity: over-the-top costuming, well-endowed vixens and absurd action carried to the extreme.
Yet here, in The Infinite, the feel is right, and Liefeld is quite at home with rapid-fire sequences, exaggerated facial expressions and dazzling panel arrangements. Seems to work, although it is not to my taste.
Writer Robert Kirkman starts us off with a nice “band of brothers” type invasion of a Dr. Doom-esque world conqueror that sees himself the hero who should be globally celebrated. Then we get the time travel jolt, and -- bam! -- the book for awhile becomes a new entity while building to what we have already seen. That, folks, is good storytelling.
But for all its craft, for all its bells and whistles, for some reason The Infinite does not take off for me – at least this issue. I don’t know if Liefeld is too over-the-top or if the expected is just exactly what you get. But all thrusters are not working here.
This may be a fine start for a fine Image property. We will have to see how the drama itself is tweaked before I would call it a success, though.