Writer: John Francis Moore
Artist: Wes Craig
are Marvel and DC so desperate to make imprints? Whatever
happened to the days when a new comic line from the big two
had a really solid reason for existing?
I'm bitching about the new DC Focus line, created to give
DC a new universe to work in where superheroes don't exist
and super powers are just manifesting. I'll admit it's a better
concept than Marvel's "let's-make-everything-look-like-weird-manga"
Tsunami line, but was anyone really asking for it?
begins with Rory Goodman, super-strong hero for hire, saving
a bunch of construction workers from certain death underneath
a collapsed building. His "manager" Cooper Santiago
lurks on the sidelines, working out payment details with the
construction company's representative and generally coming
off like a bit of a weasel before his first page ends. Rory
then embarrasses himself on national television by running
away when a Larry King-clone pressures questions him on the
death of his wife. Cooper chills Rory out, but he only goes
on to embarrass himself on other public stages, lamenting
the loss of his wife, getting drunk, and destroying more public
property with less reason than any "hero" ever would.
it's impossible to tell what the book is really about until
you reach the last page, and I'll be generous enough not to
ruin that one surprise.
Touch is probably the "ho-hum" premier of
the season. Is it awful? No, not really, but do I care about
it? Nope. The world it's set in doesn't have anything intrinsically
fascinating about it and the characters take us down very
familiar paths we've already seen in numerous modern age Marvel
and DC books. While comics don't always need an outlandish
setting or bizarrely unique heroes to make them readable (just
look at the works of Andi Watson), removing those elements
puts that much more weight on the storytelling, which just
doesn't hold up here.
when is there skyrocketing market demand for comics about
super-powered people who aren't superheroes? We've gotten
quite a bit of that, lately, and it's been proven that, like
all things, you need a new take on the formula to justify
new books. Touch may be building up to that new take,
but it's going about it at a rock's pace and, from what we've
already seen, doesn't have much to offer on the subject.
the day, these new imprints from The Big Two came about to
address specific flaws in the main line. Vertigo launched
to provide mature stories for mature audiences, the short-lived
Milestone imprint came about to give ethnic superheroes a
greater venue, and DC even made the Elseworlds not-quite-line
to handle alternate reality stories without screwing up DCU
continuity (yeah, I know, but it was a noble effort).
be unfair, but I think back to the first issue of The Sandman
whenever I see a new imprint pop up. That plot, though not
nearly as developed as the book would eventually become, started
with an immensely interesting concept and set up conflict
upon conflict upon conflict. A number of things happened in
that opening that had nothing to do with the immediate story
and some parts, in fact, wouldn't be returned to for nearly
a year- but it hooked you.
#1 definitely gives us an idea of what's going on, yet it
fails to offer us any reason to keep on reading. The art is
decent and the concept isn't wholly without merit, but where's
the hook? The only conflict occurring thus far has been resolved,
so what are we reading now? It seems like they may still be
able to do something with this title, but this opening chapter
serves merely as a tease, which just isn't enough to justify
buying it. If they're smart, the creative team will rush down
the "Ultimate" Hollywood Agent avenue open to the
story and develop some new conflicts rather than deliver us
another bloated half issue like this outing.
two things are clear by the end of this issue: we know who
has the touch, and sadly, we also know who doesn't.