Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Avon Oeming are back with a newly inspired version of “Powers” as Deena Pilgrim and Christian Walker become Federal Agents and the book “reboots” as “Powers: Bureau.”
It’s so good to have Deena Pilgrim back, and better yet to have Pilgrim and Walker back together again. Bendis does a good job of getting back into Deena’s life, picking up on the previous “Powers” storyline and creating a solid starting point for readers that may have stopped reading along the way. I’m not sure if it’s completely new-reader friendly, but it’s certainly “lapsed-reader” friendly.
Bendis jukes back and forth in time a lot in this first issue, but thanks to solid writing and strong storytelling from Oeming, it’s never confusing. Oeming’s art looks a little different than I remember it on previous “Powers” books, but I can’t quite put my finger on what the difference is. It does perhaps feel a little rushed and unrefined compared to some of his other “Powers” work, but he’s still got such a wonderful feel for the world and characters that it still makes for excellent reading. His Deena Pilgrim and Christian Walker are, naturally, his best work, and Deena especially shines visually in this issue.
To be frank, the actual storyline, though brilliant, is also a little gross. Cussing and decidedly adult material has always been a standby in “Powers.” However, adding all the sperm visuals/talk (and I’m using the much more restrained word for it here) felt somewhat excessive. It’s a bit of a necessary evil for the story Bendis tries to tell, which again is a wonderful idea and one it’s almost surprising that the “Powers” world hasn’t tackled yet. However, the issue almost felt like it was reveling in being gross, which is not something expected of “Powers,” a book generally above being controversial or gross just for shock value.
Regardless of small complaints about the execution, Bendis’ hook for this new ongoing story is brilliant and one readers will be coming back for in droves. I, for one, can’t wait to see the always stellar Bendis and Oeming execute it.