Freedom Fighter isn’t a bad issue or even a bad looking issues, but everything about it is familiar and nothing about it could really be called “original.” This is very much a conversation that happens in all comic book reading circles and it boils down to, “this is what I would do with Captain America.” I wish there was more to it than that, but that’s really all there is to this story. There’s a corrupt government branch running a superhuman program and telling him he’s doing good, which he is, but they have ulterior motives with all of their missions. Our hero goes on to discover that the previous Freedom Fighter is still alive even though he was told he was dead. That is the entire issue for the most part and really you could remove or replace “Freedom Fighter” with a dozen other comic book titles.
The writing is competent, but the dialogue is mostly exposition and none of it flows naturally or sounds realistic in the least bit. The pacing is choppy and the story hangs out with our main character in his personal life and the only reason is to have him think back about when he started the job. It’s a way to show his origin without starting with his origin, but it feels out of place and pointless by the time we get to it in the story.
The art is serviceable. It’s a style I’ve seen before and it’s just okay. There’s no real flow to the art and it’s always behind the dialogue, meaning that we’re being told more than we’re shown. The character designs are uninspired and all of the characters have the same look with different hair. The coloring relies on gradients and it stands out a lot. Especially when the lighting isn’t kept the same and the gradient moves on an object. I will say that the coloring on the hair is surprisingly good.
If I hadn’t been sent this book for review, I would never have read it. That’s the honest truth. If you’re going to do an independent superhero book you have to have an amazing story and amazing art. If you don’t then the chances of finding an audience to support it is an uphill battle. It’s not impossible, but considering the big two comic companies publish nothing but superhero books and collectively take 70% of the comic market… well like I said, uphill battle. Bottom line, this wasn’t a superhero book that had enough originality to make it stand out from the sea of other superhero titles.
Freedom Fighter #1 Writer: Michael Heitkemper Artist: A.J. Fulcher Publisher: Outpouring Comics Price: $4.99 Format: Print Website