Every so often, I come across a comic that I feel should be on everyone’s pull list, regardless of what store you frequent.
Regardless of the miniseries, the one I’m always happy to promote is Atomic Robo, created by writer Brian Clevinger and artist Scott Wegener. It’s packed full of adventure, action, humor and danger, so it’s an all-ages comic that truly just about anyone can read and enjoy.
If you haven’t read this comic before (or even if you have), you should pick up the new trade paperback out called Atomic Robo: The Everything Explodes Collection. It’s a little pricy at $39.99, but it is truly worth the money when you consider you’ll be getting 384 pages of comics goodness! (Just the name makes me smile!)
Here’s the comic’s description: “Three volumes of Atomic Robo are collected in this handsome single edition. Robo faces his greatest foes: a clockwork pyramid, the planet Mars, Stephen Hawking, a parasitic universe, and Nazi super weapons. Collects The Fighting Scientists of Tesladyne, The Dogs of War and The Shadow From Beyond Time volumes into one omnibus!”
So, just who is Atomic Robo? Here’s the answer from Wikipedia: “Atomic Robo is a robot possessing ‘automatic intelligence,’ created by Nikola Tesla in 1923. He is a core member of Tesladyne Industries, ‘a think tank dedicated to exploring the fringes of scientific inquiry,’ whose Action Scientists often respond to paranormal and supernatural emergencies. Robo has a developed sense of humor, and makes numerous wise cracks at his foes’ expense. In the past, he has secretly worked with the United States government as well as NASA. Robo’s personality is based on Clevinger’s grandfather.”
Atomic Robo originally was printed at Red 5, but currently the book is coming out from IDW Publishing, and that’s who is providing the Everything Explodes Collection. It’s the perfect jumping-on point since there’s also a new series underway as well as a webcomic! Read the first story in this trade, though, and I bet you’ll be hooked!
There are wonderful descriptions of the series, and since they let you know what the books are like, here goes! On the back cover of this volume: “If underneath Iron Man’s armor beat the heart of Indiana Jones, you may get a sense of what makes up Atomic Robo.” The series’ subtitle on each cover: “The World’s Greatest Science Adventure Magazine!” And on the website: “#1 No Angst, #2 No Cheesecake, #3 No Reboots, #4 No Filler, and #5 The Main Robot Punches a Different Robot (Or Maybe a Monster).”
One of the things I enjoy most about Atomic Robo is how unpredictable the scripting is. I’m often surprised several times an issue, and I wish more comics did that! I also find the artwork extremely easy to understand and dynamic, another thing I could request of several comics out these days.
Robo himself is very entertaining, and that also applies to his supporting cast. They each have different personalities, and I find their interactions fun as well.
There is one thing to be aware of: Robo has been alive for a very long time, and the storytellers aren’t locked into one time period. One miniseries may take place during World War II, then the next back in the late 1800’s Old West. They also will weave a story or two in the “current” era. But regardless of when the tale takes place, it’ll be an excellent read!
Do you need to read this volume to understand what’s going on in the current miniseries? No, but you’d be missing out on some terrific storytelling, so I highly recommend you buy this trade as well as the current story, Atomic Robo #1 from the aforementioned IDW.
To check out the cover from this great volume, look at the image below: