Open “Journey into Mystery” #626.1 and you’ll see an editor’s note on the first page: “This issue takes place between panels 4 and 5 on page 21 of ‘Journey into Mystery’ #622. In case you were wondering.” That and the fact that this issue isn’t written by the series’ regular writer, Kieron Gillen, gives a pretty good idea of how much this comic relates to the actual series. Then again, why a comic that began six months ago needs a ‘jumping on’ point is beyond me. For regular readers of the title, nothing new happens here and, for new readers, little that relates to what’s actually happening in “Journey into Mystery” is shown. This is a mediocre, unnecessary comic.
Ostensibly a comic that introduces the new, young Loki and his role in Asgard and his relationship with the gods since so much has changed in the status quo of Asgard thanks to “Fear Itself,” much of what happens here is out of date, or has already been explored in detail in “Journey into Mystery” and “The Mighty Thor.” If anything, Loki summoning a mystic being known as a Teller to listen in on the conversations of his fellow Asgardians seems like a contrived effort to have them reveal what they think of him because that seems like a ‘new reader friendly’ approach. Yet, nothing said by anyone is in the least surprising or revealing.
The one thing that might cause new readers to give this issue a look is Pasqual Ferry providing the art, and even that is a let down. With Frank D’Armata coloring Ferry’s drawings, much of the visual whimsy and quality is absent. His art on “Thor” was as much about the way he colored it as the line he drew and, while D’Armata tries to mimic Ferry’s coloring style, it’s much too overwrought and heaped on to bring out the best in Ferry’s line work. Additionally, pieces of art are repeated and made larger a half a dozen times, always looking fuzzier and rougher. Those instances make the comic look cheap and sloppy in how it was put together.
The best ‘point one’ issues have been the ones that manage to introduce the concept while also offering something new for regular readers of the comic. With an unnecessary ‘between the panels’ story from an earlier issue by people who don’t do the comic regularly, “Journey into Mystery” #626.1 ranks among the worst. It embodies all of the possible negatives in the ‘point one’ comics in its redundancy, questionable choice of creators, and hasty production values.