REVIEW: Velocity #1

Velocity #1
Written by Ron Marz
Art by Kenneth Rocafort
Colors by Sonny Gho of IFS
Letters by Troy Peteri

$3.99 / 32 Pages / Full Color

Top Cow

Remember when Top Cow did their first Pilot Season, and one of the winners they were going to publish as a series was Velocity, written by Joe Casey? That run never materialized, and there's a whole other story there.  But if you fast-forward to tomorrow, a new 4 issue Velocity mini-series is indeed hitting the shelves, written by Ron Marz, with art by Kenneth Rocafort. Do you know about this Rocafort guy? Because you should, and we'll get to that in a minute.

So what is Velocity?  She's a speedster named Carin Taylor, from the Cyberforce team, in the Top Cow/Image Universe.  I've never read a page of those, and can report that if you want to try this book, you'll still be just fine. If not, there's a handy primer in the back.  One of the things I like about reading superhero books from companies other than Marvel and DC is that, unlike the Big 2, you don't really know what you're in for.  I don't know what the stakes are. I don't know what the status quo is, so even if they keep going back to one, it's new to me.  There are stories to be told in the superhero genre, but so many of them don't fit in the worlds of DC and Marvel. But in Top Cow books?  It's a different feeling. It's not a radical difference, but it's just left of center, and just that much can make it refreshing. Of course, the other key to reading non Marvel or DC superhero books is that they have to be well crafted.  People might complain about mainstream comics, but when you take a wade in the vast and endless sea that are "other superhero comics," you'd be surprised how hard it is to pick out the good stuff. 

To that end, Ron Marz is helming this book.  You might know Ron Marz from writing just about every other Top Cow book they have, such as Witchblade, Magdalena, and the crossover, Artifacts. The guy's an old pro, and I mean that in best sense. He knows what he's doing, and he knows how to form characters who seem genuine and real.  If you connect with those characters, he'll bring you along for exactly the ride you want. He also includes a bit about how the whole "vibrate your molecules" is just bullshit, which made me chuckle.

However, it should be no slight on Marz' work to say the real reason to check this out might just be Kenneth Rocafort's artwork. He draws this wonderful combination of styles that reminds me of old Image superstars, at the same time I see a hint of the manic genius that is Eric Canete.  It's loose, and fluid, and the page layouts are both exciting and functional.  Just about every mark Rocafort puts to the page is wonderful. You watch. He'll be a big name before you know it, but there's no reason not to check him out now. On top of Rocafort's pencils and inks, Sunny Gho adds exactly the right kind of coloring, which is more valuable than most suspect.

Velocity #1 is in stores on June 30, tomorrow.

Story: 3          Art: 5          Overall: 4

Add Velocity #1 to your pull list.

Comments

  1. NawidA NawidA says:

    It’s kind of funny that Top Cow has much better hit/miss ratio than DC and Marvel at this point.

    Good for them. 

  2. OttoBott OttoBott says:

    Wow. Yeah, that art is pretty tremendous. 

  3. akamuu akamuu says:

    Sold!

  4. kelson kelson says:

    I was surprised at how new-reader friendly this book actually was. They tell you everything you need to know about Velocity and the series’ villain in the course of the first chapter.  You can pick this book up and not worry at all about whether the character has been around for 20 minutes or 20 years – the important stuff is all there on the page.

    Thanks for the link to my writeup of how the Casey/ChrisCross series fell apart.  If anyone’s interested, here’s my own review of Velocity #1.

  5. Glad to see Rocafort getting some recognition. I’ve loved his work for a long time, ever since first seeing a few years ago in some other Top Cow books.

  6. LostArtist LostArtist says:

    Kenneth Rocafort was the artist on Paul Dini’s Madame Mirage, there are some story telling issues in that, but I don’t know if that’s Dini or Rocafort’s mistakes, was wondering what else Rocofort had done or was doing next. might check this out for Rocafort and nostalgia sake.  

  7. mickmac59 mickmac59 says:

    Nice one Josh – always happy to see some love for the little guys. And that art does look spectacular. Sold!

  8. Mangaman Mangaman says:

    Wish I had it in on my dcbs list but it looks like I missed it back in april-may. Oh well, I love topcow works so it’s not like I’m not going to pay full price for it. I thank you Josh but my wallet is pissed.

    Safe to say it’s going to be hard to get my debit card back.