Here’s my exposure/history with Cyborg 009: this issue. Here’s how much I’m already in love/lust with this series: Fucking tons! This zero issue serves as the first chapter of Archaia’s upcoming Cyborg 009 graphic novel that will be released this summer. If fans of the original manga have any doubts about the series then all they need to do is plop down a dollar and watch all of their fears washed away.
The issue begins with a silent panel from the POV of Cyborg 009. He’s on a picnic with a beautiful woman, when a gang of men show up and begin beating him with a pipe and crowbar. His eyes shoot open as he hears “wake up zero-zero nine.” 009 can’t remember anything, but he finds himself strapped to a table and three robots standing over him. Two of the bots take aim to blast him with their hand cannons, but 009 breaks the restraints and jumps out of the way at the last second. He starts fighting the robots toe-to-toe and we see that he’s incredibly strong for someone a fraction of their size. He’s grabbed by one of them, but before the bot can crush him he breaks free and finishes them all off. Once he’s done he’s raised up on a platform in front of some scientists and eight people dressed the same way he is. The scientist in charge in calls him 009 again and this time he repeats it back as a question. The scientist informs him that the other eight are his predecessors and he must now eliminate them!
The story really kicks off from there, but for a dollar I think you’re safe picking it up yourself. I do wish that Archaia printed monthly comics again because this is begging to be digested in monthly doses and the digital version isn’t always as enjoyable as their print version (they use great paper stock).
The writing was great. There’s a huge mystery of who are these people that have been turned into cyborgs; where did they come from and why were they picked for this? The issue does everything it should and that’s entice the reader to pick up the graphic novel, which I’m sure I will be doing. I enjoyed the dialog and the turns and twists in the story.
There’s plenty of action in the book and being that it’s based on a manga and involves cyborgs, I’m sure that’s a requirement. Still, it’s a good balance of story and action and the art nails both dynamics. The character designs have been updated and modernized to an extent, but still keep the core of the characters. The uniforms the cyborgs have are awesome looking and reminiscent of the early days of comics, which produced some of the most memorable comic fashions ever.
I think this was a great license for Archaia and it’s sure to catch fans of the series attention, while bringing in new fans like myself. Action, Robots, Fighting and a mystery; all rolled up into one kick ass looking package. For only a dollar you can’t go wrong with this issue, that’s for damn sure.
Created by: Shotaro Ishinomori
Writers: FJ DeSanto and Bradley Cramp
Artist: Marcus To
Colorist: Ian Herring
Publisher: Archaia Entertainment
Release Date: 5/1/13