Review by Draven Katayama (loudlysilent)
Maximum (Max) Ride is the de facto leader of a group of six superpowered kids who were raised in a lab. In this latest episode of Marguerite Bennett’s story, Max and three of the others are trapped in the lab, the other two kids escaped, and everyone is relying on Max to form an escape plan. It’s not easy being the sole source of hope to terrified kids, especially when you’re a terrified kid.
We see a lot of comics where characters are experimented on by evil scientists, but Bennett’s writing makes this comic feel especially chilling. The kids are referred to by names like “AE-1” and called “specimens” and “investments.” Despite the serious subject matter, Bennett laces the dialogue with the perfect amount of humor, and the quick pace ups both the urgency and thrill.
Alex Sanchez, Mark Pennington, and Esther Sanz create a richly colored, inky world. Sanz uses beautiful nuances of reds and purples as flames engulf a building. I like the clothing styling details like Nudge’s jacket and Fang’s cargo pockets. The last part of this issue raises the bar in both artistic beauty and emotional weight. Sanz’s colors of a buzzing urban nightlife pop off the page.
Max Ride: First Flight is a delight: gorgeously illustrated and addictive to read. Readers of all ages will be entertained by Marguerite Bennett’s plot twists. We sympathize with Max as she struggles to lead her friends to safety and uncover her past. This is an enjoyable story that could easily sustain beyond a limited series.
RATING: 8.3 out of 10
Release date: June 10, 2015