GeekDad Comics Review: Robot 13

Geek Culture

Image: Robot 13Image: Robot 13

Image: Robot 13

Do you love robots? How about a robot with a human skull? That battles giant monsters from the deep, while searching for its own identity?

If you answered yes to any of this, then you’re in luck! Robot 13 is a new comic from Blacklist Studios by Thomas Hall and Daniel Bradford, featuring—you guessed it—a mysterious robot with a human skull battling some sort of Kraken-like monster.

I had the chance to read the first issue of the comic and it left me wanting more. The story starts off with a group of fishermen hauling Robot 13 out of the ocean and wondering what it is. Pretty soon though, giant tentacles appear over the side of the boat, and Robot 13 leaps into action, vanquishing the giant beast. But when questioned, the robot doesn’t know who he is; he just has some memory of being sent off to sea …

As writer Hall explains:

On the surface, it’s about a skull-headed robot who fights giant monsters from Greek Mythology. From a storytelling standpoint, however, it’s somewhat a reworking of Frankenstein meeting Homer’s Odyssey—it’s the story of a thing created by Science who goes on a Hero’s journey of sorts to find out who he really is…

Bradford’s artwork is a great match for the story. It’s done in a blocky graphic style akin to Mike Mignola’s Hellboy comics, which is fitting considering the subject matter: lots of reds and blacks, blues and greys. Hall and Bradford have worked well together to let the images tell a lot of the story, with understated dialogue for the most part.

My biggest complaint was that the story ended so soon, but that’s always preferable to a story that outstays its welcome. It’s a fantastic start, and I’d love to see where it goes from here.

For more information, visit the Blacklist Studios page or Robot 13′s MySpace page. Now, I’ll admit that I’m not a big fan of MySpace in general, but one clever thing they’ve done is created a music playlist on the site with plenty of robot references. Maybe a bit much, but it’s a cute idea.

Wired: Excellent illustrations complement a good robots-versus-monsters story.

Tired: It ends so soon. Hellboy fans might wonder when the big red guy is going to show up.

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