While it isn’t anywhere near as irreverent as “Deadpool,” “Longshot Saves the Marvel Universe” #1 is written more to entertain than to align continuity or provide significant depth to Longshot. Christopher Hastings firmly embeds the one-time X-Man in the Marvel Universe with appearances by Reed Richards and Tony Stark and an off-model In-Betweener-esque character.
Hastings applies a generous sense of humor to this story, but at no point does it break the fourth wall for humorous effect or fail to take itself seriously. As a matter of fact, the story in “Longshot Saves the Marvel Universe” #1 is simply safe enough, never truly pushing the boundaries in any direction, and therefore, never quite hitting the notes to make it memorable beyond the closing of the back cover. Hastings’ overall story has potential moving forward, but the cliffhanger splash page is the highlight of the issue.
Just as the mullet coifing Longshot’s noggin in 1985 dates the character to a particular time, the hairstyle applied to the four-fingered fugitive of the Mojoverse in “Longshot Saves the Marvel Universe” #1 is certain to hamstring this story’s ability to be timeless. Like the story, the artwork from Jacopo Camagni is safe. The artist uses a straight-on camera angle throughout the story, occasionally peppering in some interesting choices. More often than not those interesting choices come across as experimental; succeeding wonderfully in spots and not-so-much in other instances. Longshot’s powers don’t lend themselves to visual pizzazz, but Camagni does insert an interesting amount of detail into his panels to hold the reader’s attention. Like the story itself, the art could use a little more zip. Letterer Joe Caramagna brings an extra layer of creativity to the story with the divided word balloons of the pseudo-In-Betweener. Those balloons are dynamically unlike anything else in comics right now and add mystery and uncertainty to the words spoken by the slayer of the lucky.
“Longshot Saves the Marvel Universe” #1 is a fun story concept that has some enjoyable moments in it, like winks to Longshot co-creators Ann Nocenti and Art Adams. With the pieces unpacked from the crate and the story set in motion, Longshot now has a chance to show readers how to be lucky and have fun doing it. Hastings and Camagni have the chance to pull it together. Hpoefully they’ll focus a bit more on Longshot and make this a series worth remembering.