Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Jody LeHeup
Artist: Nathan Fox
Colourist: Dave Stewart
Letterer: Steve Wands
Release Date: 13th June 2018
700 years in the future, mankind has terraformed Mars and turned it into a thriving, vibrant world of opportunity.
Weather Man extraordinaire Nathan Bright is at the top of his game, loved by all for his wacky personality, off-beat sense of humour and unpredictable on-screen antics. He loves his dog Sadie, noodle bowls, and is making serious inroads on the stable relationship thing with his girlfriend Amanda. There are a couple of problems, though. He’s wanted for the terrorist attack that killed 18 billion men, women, and children on earth and, well, he has no idea whether he did it or not!
Full disclosure, I know very little about Jody LeHeup’s work outside of Shirtless Bear-Fighter, so I had no idea what I was getting into with this and I have to say that I’m really impressed with this first issue!
I’m going to split this issue into three parts because that’s how it seems to me. I have to be honest, I was confused as hell during what I’ll call the first act. But by the time you get to the end of the second act, the impact of what they represent creeps up on you and takes your legs out from under you.
The second act is our introduction to Nathan. Nathan Bright is quite a complicated guy. He projects an image of super confidence to his public, he’s shallow, he’s uncouth and he’s a womaniser. However, when you see him with his girlfriend he’s a bundle of insecurities and has a greater depth of character and a real desire to help people. Also, you can’t possibly hate a guy who loves his dog as much as this guy does. We meet a lot of characters in this issue even though we don’t get to know a lot about them, but I didn’t really notice that until the last page because I was so drawn into Nathan’s story.
The last act pretty much comes out of nowhere. I mean, you’ve got an idea that something is going to happen but when it does, it is such a change of pace that you’re probably going to want to back up a few pages and read it again because it’s just so awesome!
Between the storytelling, the art and the colouring, I was reminded of the classic 2000AD stories I was brought up on. Trust me, this is a good thing. Part of me thinks it is intentional, especially when you take in the cityscapes and vehicles that Nathan Fox has created (I may have even spotted some other nods, but I won’t spoil it for you) that would definitely feel at home in any sector of Mega-City One.
Dave Stewart is easily my favourite colourist of all time. I’ve never known him to put a foot wrong and he clearly hasn’t this time, taking Nathan Fox’s art and really helping it jump off the page.
Image have always been a big part of my comic collection. I think they’ve put out some incredible series’ over the years and I feel like The Weather Man really has the potential to be another. The familiarity I felt with the nods to 2000AD and LeHeup’s excellent narrative really drew me into the world Nathan inhabits and made me feel like I was in safe hands on the journey. This is one I will definitely be following closely in the months to come.
The writer of this piece was: Mark Scott
Alex Tweets from @macoy_comicgeek