The Culling Part 1 (of 4)
Writers: John Barrowman, Carole Barrowman
Artist: Neil Edwards
Publisher: Titan Comics
“Captain Jack and his Torchwood operatives aboard the alien tech-filled ship the Ice Maiden managed to thwart a plot by the alien Navigators to harvest the Earth, abetted by the Vervoids. Now, the team must help the planet recover, and continue to look for answers amidst the wreckage. But there’s something – someone! – emerging from Station Zero, where the final battle took place… something that will change Jack and Gwen’s lives forever!”
This story takes place after the novel “The Exodus Code” and the Torchwood comics collections ‘World Without End’ and ‘Station Zero.’
So this issue has a lot of set up in it for the mini series. So with that in mind not a lot happens in the issue with the exception of introducing us to a new mystery character. All we know for sure is she is related to the Vervoid and has some kind of connection to Captain Jack and Gwen Cooper. In addition Captain John Hart is back with a cryptic warning for both Gwen and Captain Jack, and is looking for something in return for helping them.
Though it is just setup for what’s to come, what is presented is intriguing enough to keep people wanting more. My only complaint is that even though it is a stand a lone mini series there is a big assumption on the party of the writers that the readers are familiar with the characters and the story thus far. I definitely see this as a possible deterrent to new readers. I am sure when you’ve spent as much time with a character as John Barrowman has this is sometimes easily overlooked. It’s lucky for him that the the story feels strong enough to look past this.
So I know sometimes when you work on a licensed property like this it’s common to get criticized on whether or not the characters look like the actors from the show. Well, I can safely say that the characters in this book do not, but the writing and art are strong enough to look past this. The character designs are strong and consistent. There is also som great use of the panels as story telling element. Panels that get cut off page to indicate time passing with things going on the reader doesn’t need to see. Also not only the use of black and white for memories, but a change in the page layout for our mystery characters flash backs. I always love artistic touches like this in comics. It’s one of those things that can’tr be recreated in other mediums. The art is very strong and creative.
So in conclusion this book is definitely worth a read, and if you are a Torchwood fan it’s a must read. I’m giving it 8 out of 10 capes and encourage you to check it out!