Review: Solar: Man of the Atom #1

The fourth iteration of this comic book hero comes from Dynamite Comics, the company reviving other Gold Key books such as Turok, Dinosaur Hunter and Magnus, Robot Fighter. Dr. Phil Seleski received a dose of radiation that should have killed him.  Instead, it unlocked super powers that enable him to alter the universe with the mere thought of a chemical equation or physics theorem.

Yawn.  We have endured that origin story from heroes ranging from Dr. Manhattan to the Incredible Hulk.  I understand that this character dates from the early 1960s and was one of the original heroes to undergo such a story.

That doesn’t mean that the 2014 version has to replay that same scheme over again.

Solar01-Cov-Doe1When a character has unequalled might, the only foe able to offer a challenge is himself.  And that’s what happens here.  Phil has to learn to deal with a power that is slowly and painfully killing him.

In the meantime, he sports a red spandex singlet as he intercedes in bank robberies.  His lab partner seeks out Phil’s family in case they want to say one last goodbye to dear old dad before he splits (pun intended).  The bastards don’t care much, save for his daughter who pays a visit at the worst possible moment.

Old comic book titles are resurrected with success at times.  Look at the way Valiant has brought X-O Manowar back with a refreshing story that brings the character to new heights that are better than any of the previous incarnations.

Dynamite has been taking licensed characters and remodeling them into the most mediocre pulp that trails along with average sales because of fan loyalty keeping the garbage afloat.  Voltron happens to be one such title to demonstrate that.

Add Solar, Man of the Atom to the stack of potential toilet paper offered by Dynamite every month.

At least the artwork is good.  For that, I give it one point.

Score: 1/5

Writer: Frank J. Barbiere Artist: Joe Bennett Colorist: Lauren Affe Publisher: Dynamite Entertainment Price: $3.99 Release Date: 4/16/14 Format: Ongoing, Print/Digital