Published by Image Comics, February 2014
Story: Antony Johnston
Art: Justin Greenwood
Color: Shari Chankhamma
Letterer: Ed Brisson
Synopsis: Well, here we are with another #1 from Image appropriately named “The Fuse” as in I had a short one reading this but I’ll get into that in a sec. Our first story arc, “The Russia Shift” takes place on a rather large space station named the Fuse. We open up to an unknown man begging for his life. Yes, always a fabulous way to start out a crime book, a character on the verge of death pleading for one’s life definitely gets my attention. After a brief interlude of pointless conversation setting up our final destination we learn about our mysterious main character Detective Dietrich where he arrives at the Midway City Shuttle Port. The port reminds me of the scene from Arnold Schwarzenegger’s movie Total Recall. Damn that was an awesome movie and if you haven’t seen it, you need too. Not that crappy remake with Colin Farrell but the original with the Governator at the helm. Yeah Arnold is a freak and apparently likes to get freaking with many, and I’ve heard he can’t act all that well but seriously, Total Recall, awesome!
So in our story we follow young Detective Dietrich as he is introduced to his future partner Detective Klem. Apparently she is due for retirement and judging from her complexion in this book got her foot at death’s door. That reminds me, the facial complexion of our characters seem a bit off in this book. Shari did a good job with the coloring for objects in the station but felt that Detective Klem looked a bit pale having an almost vampire like complexion. And another thing, I hope they fix Detective’s Dietrich’s ears as that just bugged the hell out of me. Several panels make his ears out to be ginormous and I’m not sure why but it just got to me. Seriously lose the Dumbo ears please!
Anyways, we are introduced to the concept of the Cabler described as homeless diseased ridden filth living within the walls of the Fuse station. Residents often describe seeing them simply emerging from the walls of the station where the cables reside, hence the name, and are generally hated by the resident population. I hope that more is told about the Cabler in book two as I feel it would provide a much more colorful storyline, something mysterious and intriguing to grab the reader’s.
Panel/Layout: As for the physical book it felt great in the hands, paper thick and the paneling was mostly standard with a nice overlay on various pages. If Justin Greenwood is the cover artist then I commend him as the cover looks awesome. I’m a sucker for Manhattan Projects abstract like style covers.
Verdict: Honestly I’m not sure if I could recommend this to anyone simply because I’m not all that interested in the story myself. First off it started out slowly briefly rolling through the introduction of the main characters and then gave us a mysterious death. I’m truly trying to get into the mindset of the writer in order to determine why a Cabler is so special. If he had strapped me down and implanted a bombshell of a memory that would grow ever so slowly (sorry for the shameless Total Recall references) leading me to the next book I might actually be excited for issue #2. Since that didn’t happen and I’m not emotionally vested in any of these characters, well then there you go. I realize this is just the first issue of many to come but the first issue is key, it has a job. It needs to grab the reader, hold on tightly, and take you for the ride of your life. Instead I got the “Casey Jr. Circus Train” at Disneyland.