Saturday, February 23, 2013

Mars Attacks, Volume 1: Attack From Space

 Once again, IDW seems to almost defy anyone to review their books....If you read my review of IDW's DANGER GIRL/G.I. JOE crossover, you're aware of my beef with how IDW handles review copies. This one was the worst yet. On the whole, I'd give MARS ATTACKS, VOLUME 1: ATTACK FROM SPACE a solid 7 out of 10. It would undoubtedly have scored higher if I had been given a single copy of the book that I could read in a normal fashion. Instead, I got a bad copy that was missing the first two issues, and contained a ton of blank pages, and then issues 3-6. (I'm not even sure if issue 6 is included in the actual print collection....Judging from the page count listed on Amazon.com, I don't think that it is.) I sent in a request for a corrected copy, which was never answered, and after a few weeks, tried downloading the review copy again, in case IDW had fixed it and not said anything. The new review copy they had up contained only issues 1-4. I had really been looking forward to reading this book, and I was tempted to just delete both copies and buy a hard copy for my collection, but then I thought that if IDW can't be bothered to send out decent review copies, I can't be bothered to pay for a copy of this book. And that's too bad, because I probably would have enjoyed reading a hard copy much more than I did flipping back and forth between two digital files. (I will never fully acclimate to reading digital comics, let alone messed-up digital comics.)

 The story, by John Layman, is just what you would expect: Mars attacks Earth. It's nothing to write home about, but it's much better than his overrated CHEW, which I despised. John McCrae brings the comical-looking gore and destruction, and it's worth a look just for his art. I especially enjoyed seeing Dougie and Ivor, of the Ennis/McCrea DICKS series, fleeing from the Martian destruction of Belfast. This was a good enough read that I'll be back for Volume 2, and I'm really looking forward to seeing The Martians tangle with IDW's licensed properties, such as Popeye, KISS, Ghostbusters, and The Transformers. But please, IDW...get your act together with the review copies. If you expect reviewers to go out and beat the drum for your products, at least give us a readable copy......