By Dustin Cabeal
All New Fathom is leaps and bounds better than the last Fathom title I read. It also has a refreshing narrative that could use some fine tuning but still was better than the last several Fathom series I’ve read. That said, it also revealed that this idea is tired and perhaps was too short-sighted in the beginning. Hell, maybe it reveals a fundamental flaw in all underwater society storylines, in that they’re just not interesting.
That’s the number one thing I took away from this issue. It’s not bad by any means, so don’t misunderstand me. It’s probably the best written Aspen title in the past three or four years. It’s just that by the end of it I asked myself if I really cared to read Fathom and as good as this issue was, the answer was still no. I would maybe give it one more issue to see if I could be swayed, but it has an uphill battle to keep me.
To give an example, it’s like a long-running TV show. One that you used to like, but now you’re too familiar with the formula and the characters have settled into comfortable roles, and it’s clear when they’re stuck trying to find something for them all to do. It’s not that the show has changed. The production is still good, the acting is still top notch and if anything, better than the early days, but it’s tired. Maybe, it’s that I’m tired and not finding a reason to go on with the story. If you haven’t figured out that my TV example was about every long-running drama, but also Fathom, then the catfish is out of the bag.
The art was great. It’s an Aspen title, and they’ve always been known for great art so when they deliver that it’s more par than surprising. That said, it was still a hell of a lot better than the last two Fathom series I read. The water powers were good, and the social media was still annoying. I hate social media in comics and can only think of one example of it not being annoying.
All that said, I’m going to give this book a fair score. It’s earned it because it reinvents the series, but personally, I don’t know if there’s enough there to keep the interest. If you’re a longtime fan of the series, then perhaps your excited, but the realization I had was that I no longer get excited for Fathom.
All New Fathom #1
Writer: Blake Northcott
Artist: Marco Renna
Publisher: Aspen Comics