Issue by Issue – War is Hell #1

Artists – Dick Ayers, Bob Powell, George Woodbridge, Al Williamson

The first issue of War is Hell contains four tales of battle action, each one different than the last and all of them quite entertaining for a variety of reasons. The initial tale called Decision at Dawn is a story about tactics and planning, of how history repeats itself because men are men and things do not actually change as the years pass, at least so far as war is concerned. Fokker! has to do with the German plane and a group of men who find themselves tied down, surrounded by the enemy and it soon comes down to a foolhardy plan involving that very plane. Cavalryman is perhaps the most moving story of the bunch about an old soldier and his old horse, the latter of which is about to be put out to pasture. The soldier does not want it to happen of course but rules are rules and soon enough, the time comes when the enemy has them pinned down and that old horse makes one final valiant stand. The final adventure in this book is called Helpless! and it finds some soldiers against greater odds, soldiers who think they might be helpless but are in fact quite lucky. Though the writer of these tales happens to be uncredited, they are written quite well. Some are exciting, one is quite moving and all of them entertaining to various degrees. The standout is the one about the cavalry officer and his horse, a story that shows that love and friendship know no bounds and that when it counts, those bonds will last no matter how tested they are. Each of these stories happens to be reprinted from other comic books, brought to life by a bevy of talented artists including Al Williamson, Bob Powell, Dick Ayers and George Woodbridge. All of them do a great job and making the book even better is the fact that each of these sequences is about a different facet of war, serving up a little something different for everyone. Going forward it is hopeful that things continue in this manner as it will keep things fresh while providing different glimpses of those most troubling of times.

3.5 out of 5

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