In the current economic climate, it’s understandably hard to launch a new series, especially one that features a group of characters who most current readers will only remember from the backwaters of X-Men continuity. Well, them and Blade. “Captain Britain” doesn’t deserve to be overlooked and, as a reviewer, it’s a crying shame to see books this good selling far fewer than their mediocre siblings.
However, as an Englishman, what I’ve learnt from Captain Britain in the course of nine issues is that it’s never too hopeless to turn the tide — so let’s not wait for cancellation rumors to start flying and start raving about the series BEFORE it’s too late. Over the course of this review, I’m going to try and convince you that Captain Britain is worth checking out.
Why? This issue (the last in the current arc) gives you every possible reason. Super-tight plotting from writer Paul Cornell, who fills each issue with fantastically distilled dialogue. Beautiful art from artist Leonard Kirk, who each month turns in the best work of his career. Splash pages that capture moments perfectly and encapsulate entire characters with one pose and a well-placed sentence. It’s got heart, energy, and the technical ability to back it up. What else, I ask, could you want out of a comic?
If you want modern books that remind you of Claremont’s X-Men in its heyday, with slow-burn subplots and brilliant character dynamics. If you’re a fan of Peter David’s brand of glib super-hero soap-opera. If you’re hungry to see characters from Ellis’ run on Excalibur, or the far-out concepts of Alan Moore’s own Captain Britain series. In fact, even if you just want to read a team book about traditional, classic super-heroes but for whatever reason you don’t like Bendis. This is in every way, the book for you.
Put it this way: catch me in the shop and I’ll even BUY an issue for you. Issue #9 is as satisfying an ending as any story has ever received, and if you want to know how good that feels, you’ll need to be around for the next arc. Please don’t disappoint me.