By Dustin Cabeal
The problem with reviewing Skybourne is that for some people they’re going to take it as me reviewing Frank Cho himself. Which is unfortunate because I just want to make jokes about how this comic was never that good, to begin with, and that if you were waiting for this issue, you’re probably surprised that it arrived in 2018 instead of 2020.
That’s the truth though, Skybourne is dumb and entertaining. You’re here for the art and the puns. Hell, Cho doesn’t even try to illustrate a battle scene worth a damn. Instead, it’s a lot of talking and physical comedy when a battle is about to begin. It’s like a Marvel movie for the most part. In this issue the dude’s sister is alive again, there’s a boob joke. Some will hate it; others will love it, personally raise a should and moved on. It was a low hanging fruit of a joke and seemed forced in there to fit Cho’s new bad boy of comic persona.
The story has some interesting parts, that is as a series. As single issues, it’s an incomplete read. There’s no strength to the issues, but now that it can be collected as a trade it’ll be a quick and entertaining read for anyone that picks it up. The annoying part is that it doesn’t have a rewarding conclusion. It feels like its ended just for the sake of ending. To be done with a contract and not have to get phone calls from the Publisher anymore. I’m speculating on that last part, but there has to be some truth to it. Some weekly Cho-call that someone will now be able to take out of their iCalendar. They should use Outlook’s calendar, way fucking better.
The art, good god is it beautiful. I’d say it’s worth the wait, but it’s not. You mostly see people in this issue as all the fantasy creatures are absent from the book. There is a dragon, but even then, Cho found a way to exclude the beast as much as possible. He sticks to people and closes ups on faces. Why? To get the book done. It’s a shame because it looks good, but it’s not his best work. It’s a step back as a storyteller, and that’s the real shame with waiting this long and ending up with a book that feels phone’d in.
Again, this review is of the comic and not the man. Personally, I don’t think Cho has done anything that crazy or controversial. I think it all came at a time in which drama was selling clicks and comics wanted/needed the same drama other industries had. Now, we seem to have had enough drama. Things aren’t perfect, people aren’t perfect, and this comic book isn’t perfect.