MAN PLUS #1
WRITER/ARTIST: André Lima Araújo
COVER A: André Lima Araújo – Buy it from ForbiddenPlanet.com
COVER B: Ryan Stegman – Buy it from ForbiddenPlanet.com
COVER C: Yishan Li – Buy it from ForbiddenPlanet.com
PUBLISHER: Titan Comics
ON SALE: Now
The Book: On sale in all good comic shops now is Man Plus #1 from Titan Comics, the highly-anticipated Final Cut of the hit web-comics experience by artist/writer André Lima Araújo (Avengers AI, Ultimate FF, Age of Apocalypse) comes this high-octane dystopian thriller in which technology rules with a heavy hand, cyborg strike teams are commonplace, and the lines between man and machine grow hazier every day.
Welcome to Olissipo City: a shimmering metropolis where technology rules with a heavy hand, cyborg strike teams are commonplace, and the lines between man and machine grow hazier every day.
From artist/writer André Lima Araújo comes a high-octane dystopian thriller that whisks the reader into the thick of a robotic skirmish and the unsettling conspiracy that lies at its heart…
The Review: Considered a must-read for fans of Akira and Ghost In The Shell, fans of Titan Comics recent sleeper hit Surface Tension (out as a collection in March) will also enjoy this heady, beautifully drawn SF mystery tale that has more than a few tips of the hat to the Blade Runner film and some of the great bande dessine comic creators.
Creator André Lima Araújo – who’s both a comics creator and architect – has been teasing his many fans about this project for a while on his tumblr and it’s great to see the project finally on sale. It was worth the wait.
Opening with an action-packed sequence as a mysterious group of thugs pursue a confused and equally mysterious android – their mission unhindered by any consideration for the civilians of Olissipo City that get in their way – the story develops at a brisk pace. The underfunded police force begin a handicapped investigation (there’s barely enough in the budget for a helicopter search for the fleeing android) against the backdrop of a beautifully-realised cityscape and environs. This first issue builds to a tantalising climax that should have readers back for the next issue.
With stunning art and a richly-layered story, my only gripe with the book is the lettering which although by no means poor (the letterer will have been following an editorial brief, after all), lacks any emphasis to draw the eye through a balloon and punch up the story. This in turn exposes the occasional oddity of phrase, which given the futuristic setting may of course be deliberate, but I do think some more fine tuning is required to tighten the dialogue.
This is really minor criticism – don’t let me put you off taking a look at the book, because as a future police procedural, Man Plus has set out its stall with aplomb and more than enough intrigue to want me to follow it through.
• The first 12 pages of Man Plus #1 are live right now on the official Man Plus website, www.manpluscomic.com – and here’s some preview pages
Not to be confused with: Man Plus, the 1976 science fiction novel by Frederik Pohl, which won the Nebula Award for Best Novel in 1976, was nominated for the Hugo and Campbell Awards, and placed third in the annual Locus Poll in 1977. Pohl teamed up with Thomas T. Thomas to write a sequel, Mars Plus, published in 1994.
The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. He is currently editor of Star Trek Explorer, published by Titan – his third tour of duty on the title originally titled Star Trek Magazine.
Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Babylon 5 Magazine, and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War” and “Dan Dare”.
He’s the writer of “Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies” for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.