By Ashley Gibbs
Going into Daughter of Titan #1 I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, and after having read it, I’m still left confused. The cover art and title are dynamic, depicting a girl and a powerful robot, but the premiere offers so many plots that we don’t actually get any of what the cover promises. While this is only the first issue so all of the secrets can’t be revealed at once, it sets up so many pieces of world-building that it lacks cohesiveness and there is little to no action. If the cover excited you, then prepare to be disappointed, there are no mech battles this issue. However, we are presented with interesting characters in a world in desperate need of change, a common trope and one of many used here. Fair warning, there is some colorful language used that might not be appropriate for younger readers, which is a shame because this could be a good story for young girls.
Alena lives in the rough side of town and doesn’t trust the cops to help those less fortunate, one day her friend offers her the chance to clean up the streets with a mecha suit and the two decided to make a difference. At its core, that’s the main story of this issue. It’s enhanced by the fact that Alena is a college student who is a robotics genius but her parents have made her switch to marketing for better job prospects, relatable but also odd since her best friend Suzanne just went to Europe for an event on the subject. Suzanne was also brought into a very lucrative special project, one that afforded her the chance to build the mecha suit in the first place. If going into robotics can offer such opportunities, why are Alena’s parents so against it? Perhaps this plot hole will be answered later, along with why Alena has super powers. For some reason, a girl with a high tech suit also needs super powers. I’m not against this idea but they’re not explained and it seems redundant. Also present are trope checklists for modern day “woke” comics; police brutality, bullying, classism, poverty and a dash of homophobe and sexism. Oh, and Alena is Middle Eastern. There’s a lot of stuff thrown at readers in issue one and this takes away from any action that could have been added, also giving us less time to connect with Alena.
The artwork is smooth and complements the story. There is a lot of movement, especially in the few action scenes. They’re well drawn and hint that things will look even better when everything hits the fan and Alena starts actually fighting. Colors are bright and add emphasis to emotional moments, the nice part of town where the college is located is bright and clean while the slums are dirty and very dark, while time of day does factor in it doesn’t change the fact that these tonal shifts were deliberate. The art isn’t perfect, faces tend to be a bit flat especially when viewed from the side, however I found the art style simple and expressive.
Daughter of Titan #1
Writer: Richard Mooney
Artist: Vivian Truong