Cover #1 – Brian Michael Bendis, Writer; David Mack, Artist
Ray – 9.5/10
Ray: The second new creator-owned title from the Jinxworld imprint, Cover #1 is a very different comic from Brian Michael Bendis’ other entry, Pearl. Pearl was a straightforward noir comic with a new and intriguing femme fatale in a dark world of secrets. Cover #1 is a story about a world Bendis knows very well – comic books.
The main character, Max Field, is a hard-working cult comic book artist who is currently attending a comic book convention and trying to sell his original art. This segment is of particular interest to me because some of the scenes taking place at the con are stuff I actually experienced at New York Comic Con in past years. I’m also pretty sure Max’s friend and partner Owen is supposed to be a Bendis analogue, which amused me. Max’s boring time at the con picks up in a big way when he meets Julia, a passionate fan of his work who proceeds to buy several pieces at full price and give him a huge ego boost in the process. Bendis nicely captures the highs and lows of the industry, with Max going from being adored at the con to a humble apartment dealing with his shady father.
That’s when things get interesting, but first I need to focus on Bendis’ partner in this title, David Mack.
He pulls off one of the coolest feats I’ve seen an artist manage in some time. Mack is essentially a chameleon in this issue, with his art in the opening segments being a unique, minimalist style. When he shifts to Max’s comic, a beautifully illustrated samurai epic, the art switches to Mack’s time-consuming painted style. Mack used to use this for all his comics, which is why his monthly output was minimal. This seems like a great way to get more Mack art.
When Julia shows up again in another event of Max’s, I started to get a Misery vibe here, but this issue has a more interesting twist in store for us. The reveal of who Julia really is took me by surprise, and I can honestly say I have no idea where Bendis and Mack are taking us. What I can say is that this is immediately one of the most interesting comics on the stands. There is nothing else like Cover #1 being put out right now. It feels like a throwback to the experimental style of Bendis’ early career, and that’s something I very much want to follow.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.