Sinergy 1 is a really good first half of a first issue. Unfortunately, we have to wait about a month for the next half. Jess’s first time goes about as poorly as can be expected: it hurts, she sees the guy turn into a monster, her father bursts in on them, the guy she loses her virginity to’s name is Leaf. A lot going against her. Her father’s been hiding a family secret: he’s a seer, and now that she’s lost her virginity, so is she. They can see people as they actually are, and some are monsters. Literal monsters. We, the readers, find out that the family dog is a benevolent (or at least chaotic neutral) demon, and we’re off to the race.
Taki Soma and Michael Avon Oeming’s new series brings a lot of character to the fore (and I love watching creators who have made the Portland exodus keep making series take place in Portland--lookin’ at you, Oeming and Bendis) but they leave a lot of the plot a mystery. I’m not fundamentally opposed to this method of storytelling, but the fact that they included a semi-backup story by Taki Soma solo where the monster boyfriend meets another guy like him who invites him to an overthrow-the-world club. It’s one of the more interesting parts of the book for me, especially the way that Soma uses panels-within-panels to reveal new things about these monsters.
The place where Oeming seems to live nowadays is this little-touched niche of adult stories with his very bold, simplistic lines. It wouldn’t be surprising to see that kind of art in an all-ages title, or a cartoon tie-in, but to see his work on Powers and The Victories or here, on Sinergy, it brings an interesting take to what can sometimes be a story that we the readers feel like we can get ahead of. It’s an interesting trick, and one day I’ll figure out how he does it. Today is not that day. On the other hand, Taki Soma’s linework in the backup portion of the book is similar to Oeming’s, in the same family at least, but it feels less dynamic and more interested in revealing character. Overall, these two should be doing great work on this book.
This book was a fun read, but it was largely forgettable once it was out of my hands. Out of Jess and her Dad, it wasn’t clear whose story it was going to be. It was clear Oeming and Soma wanted it to be Jess’s story, but they spent a lot of time with her dad and the dog, getting some cheap jokes and panels where the dog pisses on dead demons. Funny, but not moving the plot forward. This issue would have been a comfortable entry in the mid-20s of a series, but it lacked a lot of the drive that a first issue needs to push you forward and pull you into the second issue.
Overall, I’ll check out the second issue of the series, but after that I’ll probably check out. I like Oeming’s art, and I like what Soma is doing, but there are other Oeming series I dig more than this.
Writers: Michael Avon Oeming, Taki Soma Artist: Michael Avaon Oeming Colorist: Taki Soma Publisher: Image Comics Price: $3.50 Release Date: 11/19/14 Format: Print/Digital