Forsaken #1 Review

Reviewer: Chris Delloiacono
Story Title: The Light of Other Days: Part 1

Created and Written by: Carmen Treffiletti
Penciled, Colored, and Designed by: Kristian Donaldson
Inked by: Nick Zagami
Lettered by: Lithium Pro
Editor: N/A
Publisher: Image Comics

Image Comics has had its peaks and valleys since launching in 1992. While Erik Larsen is the only founding father left, Image’s comics are probably better now than ever before! Savage Dragon, The Walking Dead, Invincible, NYC Mech, and Small Gods are some of the most interesting books on the entire comic scene. These aren’t the only highly-touted books that Image is producing. Just the ones I’ve gotten a chance to read. I’m paying a lot more attention to Image’s offerings every month; simply, I don’t want to miss the start of another fine series.

Forsaken didn’t hit me like a ton of bricks as some of Image’s other recent offerings have, but I do see potential. The title is set in a somewhat bleak future and centers on a black-suited cop named Apollo Delk. The book’s rife with the staples of the future-cop genre. Delk mourns his dead wife and child. He’s a heavy drinker. While Delk flaunts the rules at every turn, he does his job quite well. And, of course, he’s not a happy man.

The story kicks off with a black-and-white sequence, narrated by Delk, showing a caper-gone-wrong. Delk’s at the mercy of a gunman and his partners are along for the ride. This is sometime in Delk’s not-too-distant future. It’s time to flashback and in the process move to full-color. We meet Delk on the job as he takes out a terrorist named “The Baptist.” After he’s through with work, we follow Delk through his unhappy day. He kills time at a local bar then settles down with a bottle at home and stares at holo-images of his dead wife and child. Delk receives a mysterious phone call and is beckoned to Megalon Police Headquarters where he meets Mr. Hand. He’s asked to take part in an “opportunity” and ferried to meet his potential “friends” and find out the real deal. We’re left as Delk and his four teammates are assembled and about to find out what they’ve been called together to do.

Like I said, there aren’t many surprises in the first issue of Forsaken. The narration is a little clunky at times, and the set-up is by the numbers. I liked the flashback that started things off and my interest was piqued by the prospective assignment. There’s some really interesting potential here. The follow through in the next issue will be the make-or-break as far as I’m concerned.

Artistically speaking the Kristian Donaldson is a revelation. The character designs jump out at you and the cityscapes are vivid and interesting. This is a world that I want to see more of. The coloring (also by Donaldson) is muted, but adds that extra little spark which makes the setting that much more interesting. My only artistic complaint is with regard to the resolution of the standoff between Delk and “The Baptists.” The series of images are a bit confusing and I was left to figure out exactly what had occurred.

As a whole, this is a solid first issue. The main character is given time to shine. While the driving force behind the book is alluded to, it’s left as a mystery until the second issue. Not to mention the fantastic world that Delk lives. There’s a lot to enjoy in this first issue. Certainly enough to bring me back next month. I’m anxious to see where everything is leading, but not yet sold on the series. A strong second outing could make this series another must read from Image.