Thursday, 27 September 2012

New Beginnings - Talon #0

As part of the third wave of DC titles we have a “true” Zero edition. This title is a new story spinning a character out of a recent arc.

For Batman fans the recent Scott Snyder storyline of Night of the Owls was met with both praise and criticism. Even so the idea of an elusive organisation that works from the shadows to exert control and direction over a city is not a new one. The DC twist of course being the theme based around owls (a natural predator of bats) and the apparently almost immortal assassins known as Talon.

With any such organisation there will be operatives who excel in their work - driven with an unquestioning will. And then there will also be those who on occasion find that their path isn’t always so clear or perhaps subject to a higher authority. This is the case with Calvin Rose.

The issue, written by James Tynion IV to a collaborative plot with Scott Snyder, documents very quickly the rise of Rose from childhood through to servitude as a Talon. From the moment his father locked him in a kennel and threw away the key, through his induction into the talent camp for the Owls that was Haly's Circus and ultimately his entry into the service of the Court; the idea that he was always running is maintained. This is ultimately to become the drive behind this character and will continue through the ongoing title.

The sole aim of this issue is to rapidly introduce a completely new character to you, giving him a fleshed out backstory complete with motivation and personality. This isn’t a two dimensional character who has been set in stone. Casey has changed his ideas and feelings over time. What hasn’t changed is the motivations behind it all; as with so many heroes or anti-heroes there has to be some painful quirk in the past.

The artwork is provided by Guillem March and is rough and quite dark, much like Casey. March is a forefront artist and spends a lot of time concentrating on the main characters in the frames giving much more detail than some of the backgrounds. This focuses the reader on Rose a lot which is exactly what is needed for this issue.

As I mentioned before this issue achieves exactly what it needs to. The reader is quickly involved but the story isn’t too deep. The basic premise is a simple one that Rose is a highly skilled fighter who is now on the run from a sinister organisation whilst helping people on the way. It’s kind of like crossing the A-Team with The Littlest Hobo. Whilst I can see it will be easy to have a common running theme with multiple sub stories I am wondering how much you can get out of this story without it being repetitive. I am also expecting a run in with Batman at some point in the future also being inevitable.

New title, new character, new fan base? I think it would only be fair to see where this goes before making a definitive judgement on it all but it is certainly a little different. And definitely the best of latest wave of DC's New 52!

Matt Puddy is gearing up for some hardcore SNIKT! action!

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