Nooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo!!!!!! This was pretty much my response as I opened the first page of the final installment of Protectors Inc. I have had a fun ride during the last year that these ten issues have been released. Truly a precious gem in a swath of many owner created comics that are published by Image. Protectors Inc has really impressed me on several levels as it has presented a very unique look at superheroes, at regular Joes, and at the very thin line between law, order, greed, and ethics. Taking the best elements of a classic superhero story and mixing it in with an old detective noir drama with a mega splash of color that makes this mini not only interesting, but original as well was an absolute touch of genius. Written by J. Michael Straczynski and drawn by Gordon Purcell, Protectors Inc. has been a page turner from beginning to end.
What more can I say? It’s Here! The end is here. During the last issue, things came together and the curtain was unveiled. Issue #10 picks right up from there as the characters must now deal with the consequences of the big reveal. What is displayed is a nice rock-em sock-em action play with wonderful elements of surprise that makes you burn through the pages briskly. But it doesn’t stop there. Once completed, the whole story takes a complete unexpected turn that pulls at the reader's heart-strings. Yes a comic that has chiseled out stone jawed heroes takes a turn to the emotional side that fits well with the story and adds a proper wrap to a wonderful ten issue run.
I have reviewed a lot of miniseries and on more than one occasion, I typically am unimpressed with the finale. Usually, we are given decent action with an outcome that is either predictable or uninspired. It is like all the work and labor being put into the making of the book simply runs out of steam when the end finally drops. I can say that it doesn’t happen with Protector’s Inc. I found the ending to be not only satisfying, but rewarding as well as you become invested in these characters through the reading. In the ending, we get a delivery that meets the expectation that has been built up. The mystery gets revealed and the battle erupts accordingly that reaches an outcome that is almost poetic as the tables are turned on the supers, really allowing them a chance to stare down their own vulnerabilities and weaknesses.
I have read a whole lot of titles by Straczynski this past year and for the most part they have been mostly good. But I give Protector’s Inc the props of being his best work of the year in my opinion. He really hit the marks all over these ten issues and it has been a true pleasure to read it. The same can be said for artist Gordon Purcell and his deep art that looks like it came right out of the sixties or seventies, but with an emotional edge that added substance to the bold and strong people he has been drawing. It has been big time awesome.
I leave this book with a sense of sadness as I don’t have Detective Riley to look forward to every month. But in the same respect, I am more than happy to sing the praises of this wonderful tale. If you are searching the market for something a little bit different from the beaten path, but with super writing, strong art, and magnificent color, then I cannot praise Protectors Inc enough. It is well worth the investment and I think you will find that after reading it, you will have a special place in your heart for this little comic that could.
Writer: J. Michael Straczynski Artist: Gordon Purcell Publisher: Image/Joe’s Comics Price $2.99 Release Date: 11/19/14 Format: Ongoing; Print/Digital