Running a total of six issues back in the 1950’s, Cosmo the Merry Martian has had a less than remarkable impact on the comic book world so it was somewhat of a surprise to see the character brought back over sixty-five years after his debut. Cosmo #1 was written by longtime Sonic the Hedgehog creator Ian Flynn and drawn by Tracy Yardley and introduces Cosmo and his motley crew to readers through the eyes of lost human astronaut Captain Max Strongjaw, a most Archie-centric name if I have ever heard one.
After picking Max up on their way to the moon in response to a distress signal the crew goes through the motions of introducing one another to Max, and the reader, and show off their individual characteristics. Turns out that the Martians had built a huge amusement park on the dark side of the moon decades ago and which had been abandoned for years. The mystery of deserted amusement park and the distress call emanating from it, along with the character introductions, are what make up the storyline and ends in quite the cliffhanger.
Graphically Tracy has given Cosmo a visually modern appearance and he would have looked right at home in the Sonic the Hedgehog universe that Archie published for over twenty years. All the characters look distinct and show a ton of personality in every panel, it truly is a cast of characters that I would not mind reading more stories about. Ian writes a nice crisp dialog between the characters that show his years of experience writing and along with the solid clean artwork makes for a great all-ages title and a worthy relaunch of the classic character.
The $2.99 price point is wonderful and makes for a strong impulse purchase but part of me wishes Archie included at least a text page with the history of the character or even a reprint of one of his previous appearances like they did with their horror titles. It is a small complaint with what is otherwise a great package and shouldn’t deter potential buyers.
I did a quick call around to various comic books shops in my area and they all sold out of Cosmo which is a very good sign for the comic and points to this incarnation of the character lasting longer than he did last time. Seven issues or bust!
Archie Comics – $2.99