Dial H for Hero #6 – Sam Humphries, Writer; Joe Quinones, Artist; Scott Hanna, Inker; Jordan Gibson, Colorist
Ray – 9.5/10
Ray: Sam Humphries and Joe Quinones wrap the first arc of Dial H For Hero, their hilariously meta teen superhero epic in style with Dial H for Hero #6, a spectacular issue that continues to play with the conventions of comic book art and show why Quinones might be the best artist working.
When we last left off, the evil Mister Thunderbolt had hacked the phones of everyone in Metropolis, turning them into H-dials and unleashing thousands of unpredictable new superheroes into the city. Summer, as Lolo Kick Em, is in the field trying and mostly failing to restore order, while Miguel is with Robby Reed in the Heroverse trying to get up the courage to return to fight back and save the day.
Quinones’ art style manages to shift from Astro City to Daniel Clowes in the same issue, which is something stunning, although at times the indie aesthetic gets in the way of the story – there are some pages where one story is deliberately superimposed over another.
This story wouldn’t work nearly as well if it wasn’t for how well-written Miguel and Summer are. Summer could have easily been a stock “Bad girl” trope who lures the mild-mannered boy into trouble, but instead she’s a girl with her own painful past who finds release in her superhero identities, and it’s been great watching her cut loose.
Miguel could easily have been another snotty teen boy lead like Derek from Sideways, but instead he has real anxieties about death and whether he can be a hero, and watching him overcome them this issue to find a heroic identity that truly speaks to him pays off in spectacular fashion. Dial H for Hero #6 doesn’t actually resolve the main story – Mister Thunderbolt isn’t unmasked, and a bigger plot by him is teased – so thank God this series was renewed for another cycle. This is one of the most enjoyable comics in recent years from DC, and the boundless energy and creativity reminds me why I love comics so much.
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Disclaimer: GeekDad received this comic for review purposes.