Writer/Artist: Aaron Lopresti
Release Date: 23rd September, 2015
What if you could create anything?
That’s the question behind Aaron Lopresti’s Power Cubed, coming next month from Dark Horse Comics. This first issue introduces us to Kenny Logan, a normal enough boy who gets a decidedly abnormal present from his awkward genius father on his eighteenth birthday. You see, Kenny’s father has created a small metallic cube that can rearrange the matter of any object into – well – anything else. Don’t like your toaster? Simply turn it into a (toaster-sized) car. Brilliant, right? Unfortunately, the device has attracted the attention of gloriously over-the-top Nazi scientist Doctor (don’t call him “mister”) Cruel and his bumbling henchmen, who have plans of their own for the cube.
Lopresti has established himself for two decades in the comic world as an extremely talented journeyman creator whose work has graced titles like Planet Hulk, Wonder Woman and Justice League International. For this rare foray into the creator-owned world, however, it’s his boundless creativity and knack for brilliantly hilarious dialogue that really carry things. The idea is solid, no doubt about it, but in less confident hands it could easily come across clichéd or cheesy; a generic Saturday morning cartoon that gets cancelled midway through the first season. Thankfully however, Lopresti’s execution here is pretty much spot-on, and the whole thing is so damn fun that the reader isn’t given an opportunity for any cynical thoughts to creep in. Yes, some of the supporting characters are a little flat for the time being, but the ones who matter – Kenny and his father – are given more than enough attention to carry the story.
It doesn’t hurt that the book looks absolutely fantastic, either. Lopresti’s credentials as an artist are unquestioned, and his suitably cartoony approach here helps Power Cubed hit just the right tone. Too realistic and it would seem jarring, too over-exaggerated and it would seem goofy. Instead, the artwork hits the mark perfectly here, and Lopresti’s character designs are brilliantly varied (as can be see on the cover at the top of this page) to boot. Plus, the fact that the nature of the story gives him the opportunity to draw pretty much anything that Kenny can imagine – from tiny robots to massive red dinosaurs – gives him ample opportunity to flex his artistic muscles.
With a fun premise and an impressively tongue-in-cheek execution, this first issue serves as a brilliant introduction to the crazy world that Lopresti has created; a world of villainous Nazis and their moronic henchmen, a world of imagination and excitement where anything is possible. Power Cubed is a book where you can feel the enthusiasm of the creator bursting out of every page, and with the polished visuals and constant stream of humour, is nearly impossible to read without a smile on your face.
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