by  in Comic Reviews Comment
Story by
Art by
Morgan Luthi
Colors by
Letters by
Jose Macasocol and Jr.
Cover by
Morgan Luthi
BOOM! Studios

No stranger to all ages reads, J. Torres manages to provide a story about the popular reclamation robot that is at once both cute and enjoyable. Capably accompanied by Morgan Luthi’s pitch-perfect artwork, Torres’ story gives us a peek into what may have transpired before the opening credits of the 2008 animated film. Torres provides a nicely staged story with more than a few “WALL-E” moments that seem prescribed from discarded storyboards. Like most comics that do not rely on dialog for pacing, this issue reads as quickly — or slowly — as the reader chooses. Torres’ tempo is merely there as a guideline. The sense of wonder and fun that made WALL-E a hit in the theaters is translated nicely to the printed page by Torres. The rubber duckies are a nice touch in this issue, and I found myself chuckling at WALL-E’s interest in them. I trust Torres will be able to keep this little robot’s adventures feeling fresh and new.

Upon opening this issue, I made a mental connection between this issue and “Owly.” Andy Runton has become a modern master of the cute, enjoyable, all ages “Silent” comic, and J. Torres has taken more than a few cues from Runton’s work. While the subject matter could not be more disparate — Runton’s protagonist is an owl surrounded by friendly forest friends, and WALL-E is Earth’s last gasp at rejuvenation — the accessibility is the same. One needn’t have seen “WALL-E” to appreciate this comic. Of course, familiarity with the character and the concept certainly adds depth to this story.

Luthi’s artwork is detailed, yet expressive, and it keeps “WALL-E” from feeling too robotic. There are some transitions that seem to jump a little farther than I expected on first read, but for the most part, Luthi manages to keep WALL-E distinct from his seemingly identical counterparts. My nine-year-old and I were a little foggy on the action in the last panel, but seeing as this story is continued in the next issue, we’ve both started counting down the days.