As a child, I remember discovering there was a television show that played late at night called The Avengers. Like most kids growing up reading comics, my mind raced at the possibility that a show existed about the now-billion-dollar super team. When I finally saw what the show was about, I was left completely underwhelmed and fell asleep almost instantly. Beyond that encounter and the highly dubious movie adaptation from the 1990s, I knew next to nothing about this series. Perfect. Time to see what Steed & Mrs. Peel #1 has to offer. You now have my attention.
WRITTEN BY: Mark Waid and Caleb Monroe
ART BY: Will Sliney
PUBLISHER: BOOM! Studios
RELEASE: 26 Sep 12
The opening pages offer a solid introduction akin to what you may see in an opening to a modern James Bond movie: covert agents, missiles launched, jets intercepting and then BOOM! Buckingham Palace blown away! That is attention grabbing, folks. England’s new fall look will be a combination of rubble meets zombie apocalypse chic. Mark Waid and Caleb Monroe are able to capture the essence of the main characters very well through various interactions and conversations. Plus, the hook of exploring a devastated England is intriguing. The antagonists of the series, who take to calling themselves The Hellfire Club, which is a bit too familiar and I think I may have heard it before from some other marvelous comic company. Perhaps it is a British reference I just don’t understand.
This story is definitely set in the era of the original show as intercoms and automated firefighting systems are the latest technology showcased, which adds a nice bit of novelty to the post-apocalyptic genre. Another piece of the previous era surfaces in the form Mr. Steed’s very un-modern comment of “progress.” Look for it, it’s cheeky. What is new to “Steed & Mrs. Peel” is the situation they find themselves in. Mashing past tastes, 1960s spies, and modern tastes, end of the world and zombies, it will be interesting to see how they develop in future issues.
The art by Will Sliney reminds me of Tony Harris’ work for his details and thick inking, as well as Chris Samnee’s use of black and negative space. I’m excited to see what he can do when they really let him loose on the page.
Aside from the cliche villains of the series, “Steed & Mrs. Peel #1” is a good start to an experiment in genre-mashing.
Reviewed by: FriendlyNeighborhoodBrady