The Troop #1 Review

The Troop is a new comic series written by British actor Noel Clarke. You probably remember him from Doctor Who or Star Trek: Into Darkness. I always tend to be hesitant when actors try their hand at writing comics. The results are mixed and actors have a tendency to finish the project and move on. Going in the Troop’s favor is that Titan has apparently been out to publish some good comics, using the attention their Doctor Who license gives them.

TheTroop1_Cover_B_Elena Casagrande TheTroop1_Cover_A_Joshua CassaraTHE TROOP​ #1​

WRITER: NOEL CLARKE
ARTIST: JOSHUA CASSARA
COVER ARTIST: JOSHUA CASSARA
VARIANT COVER: ELENA CASAGRANDE
PUBLISHER: TITAN COMICS
PAGE COUNT: 36 PP
FORMAT: SOFTCOVER
PRICE: $3.99
RELEASE DATE: DECEMBER 9

Across the planet and unknown to each other, a group of troubled teenagers lead lives of quiet desperation. But hell is about to befall them and they find their lives destroyed when they are targeted by dark forces. On the run, they discover they have unbelievable powers and must come together – as The Troop!

Issue #1 comes with two covers to collect: an art cover by series artist Joshua Cassara and ​a variant art cover by red-hot Doctor Who artist​ ​Elena Casagrande.

Noel+Clarke+FfYeY2JIoiImNoel Clarke starred as the much-loved Mickey in Doctor Who, as Thomas Harewood in J.J. Abrams​’ ​Star Trek Into Darkness and wrote and starred in the cult British films, Kidulthood and Adulthood. His stirring performances have lead him to win the Laurence Olivier Award for Most Promising Performer in 2003 and a BAFTA Orange Rising Star Award in 2009.

Noel has now taken his lifelong passion for comics and his writing talents and created an unflinching tale of a teen super team that is as dark as it is compelling.​ ​ It’s the ‘X-Rated X-Men For The New Millennium!’

Preview Art:

TheTroop_01_PREVIEW TheTroop_01_PREVIEW2 TheTroop_01_PREVIEW3

Review:

I’m so glad that the press release mentions the X-Men, because that’s what this comic feels like. Keep in mind that isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Noel Clarke can write a cinematic X-Men story which is what this feels like. It feels like an X-Men story where all of the comic book backstory is thrown out. We have a shadowy organization hunting down superhumans and one guy rescuing whomever he can. It is very mature and doesn’t shy away from the mortal ramifications of superhuman powers. I question the motives of everyone involved, but so far a few characters are interesting.

The artwork has a very standard, super-naturalistic style that we would expect from a mainstream super-hero comic, but it works in this story’s favor. It helps give the book a feeling that this is a new way of telling an X-Men story. The colors are good without getting too in the way with special effects. Towards the end of the book there’s a transition between adjacent locations that would work better with a pull back to establish that location. The last half of the story also gets a little confusing without a visual way to differentiate a flashback from the main story. However, if you read it carefully, you can definitely make out the transition.

Overall, this is an interesting new series, and I hope it goes on long enough to grow some legs. It’s always weird when a new comic feels so much like a popular mainstream series, but this doesn’t feel like a bad rip-off, more of a more cinematic re-imagining.