I am always excited when there is a new Atomic Robo Comic out and I have liked every single one I have read. The debut issue of Vol 5 – Deadly Art Of Science, published by Red 5 Comics, is no different. With story and art by Clevinger and Wegener respectively, Vol 5 Issue 1 sees Robo in the 1930s working with Tesla and yearning for adventure.
As is the case with Robo, adventure usually finds him. This time in the form of a masked vigilante hunting down the mob. The humor and wit of Robo shines through Clevinger’s writing as always and I find that Robo is fast becoming one of my favorite comic book characters. He feels more human than many of the others that I have read. A case in point (possibly a minor spoiler) is Robo’s quest for acceptance with the masked vigilante and literally pursuing the course of the monomyth, an idea that Joseph Campbell laid out in detail in 1949, but which Robo culled from reading adventure western comics. Robo is just a likable guy and you can understand his attitude and reactions, his desire to do something more.
Wegener’s art of course helps to bring the story together and compliments the writing well, imbuing Robo and the scene in general with a sense of emotion apropos to the situation. My only gripe for this first issue is that it doesn’t really show any new character designs that really leap out at me like Vol 4 did, but this story line suggest a more subdued pace for now and I suppose I will have to wait for next issue to get my fill of horribly mutated monster freaks.
That is not to say that the story isn’t interesting. There is an unexplained twist at the end that suggests something more sinister is in store for Robo and over all, the issue is entertaining as you watch the interactions of the characters. I am convinced that Vol 5 will be a worthy entry into the Atomic Robo series.