Issue by Issue – Captain Action #1

Writer – Jim Shooter
Artist – Wally Wood

The book begins with a bit of action, Captain Action to be precise as he battles the man named Krellik and for a moment, it seems like he has the upper hand. Author Jim Shooter soon cuts away from that to go back in time, to a moment where Clive Arno and the man named Krellik used to work together as archaeologists, if not being friends. They discover a site that is impossible to categorize as it features so many cultures present that should not be present. Things change between the two men when a chest of coins is discovered, coins that when cleaned up give the bearer unimaginable power. Arno thinks it fascinating while Krellik immediately wants to make money and rule the world with what the coins can do. The two men soon see a vision of gods long gone and hear their tale, of how they are not actually gods, of their power and of how they cannot stop meddling in the affairs of man. So it is that they decide to leave for another planet but not before they leave a token of their power – that being the coins. Now, back in the future, Arno and Krellik still have two very different frames of mind as to what they should do with the coins and after Krellik discovers he is not able to use them, not being pure of heart and such, he receives a calling. It leads him to a discovery of his own and to powers from those beings that most would call evil. Krellik immediately looks to make Arno pay for imagined transgressions and finds something else he can do instead. The book soon cuts forward as Arno returns to civilization and Shooter has the man set up his new life that will allow him to make full use of his newfound powers. Arno comes to realize that Krellik has decided to tarnish his name by smearing Captain Action before he can even start to do the good works Arno had in mind and this leads to a confrontation between the two men with an appearance by Superman to boot. Shooter writes a very fun tale packed with action and mythology to boot and all of it pencilled expertly by the amazing Wally Wood. Clive Arno might not have put a lot of thought into his alter-ego’s name but it perfectly encapsulates what this book is about and his once-friend Krellik makes for the perfect nemesis. It is also interesting to see Arno make it a family affair with the introduction of his son as Action Boy though bringing their pet panther along as a sidekick might give away their civilian identities as it is most likely that not every person has one for a pet. With such a rich history painted within this issue, it is hopeful that at some future point that Captain Action has some sort of interaction with these mysterious god-like beings as well as explore the various powers that the coins imbue the user with. A great first issue that gives the reader everything they could want and one that leaves them wanting more.

4 out of 5

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