19th Jun2014

‘Alien Legion: Uncivil War #1′ Review

by Richard Axtell

Written by Chuck Dixon, Carl Potts | Art by Larry Stroman | Published by Titan Comics | Format: Paperback, 32pp

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As a civil war breaks out on one of the rim worlds in the galaxy, hundreds of refugees flee the system, seeking asylum in safer areas. However, it is up to Force Nomad, a team of specialists, to determine which of these hundreds of ships are actually weapon less, peaceful asylum seekers, trying to escape from the horrors of war, and which are the types with a more aggressive agenda, trying to use the war to their advantage.

I have never heard of the Alien Legion comics before so this is my first foray into this space faring, science fiction comic’s universe. Alien Legion: Uncivil War #1 is written by Chuck Dixon & Carl Potts and at first glance you can’t help but draw comparisons with the soon to be on the big screen team, the Guardians of the Galaxy. As a first time reader to the Alien Legion series, this comic does not hold your hand in explaining the large array of characters and races that are presented and, after a page pointing out the main characters, you are dropped into a universe of strange words, more characters who aren’t really explained and no back story.

Of course, this isn’t an origin story book, so these aren’t necessarily required but if you are a first time reader, expect to be frustrated and have to refer to the glossary at the back to understand what on earth (or not on earth) they are talking about. The story itself has a sense of humour, following a team (although I am not even sure if it is the main team), as they go from vessel to vessel trying to see the true purpose of the ships, whether they are friend or foe. This sometimes results in quite a silly circumstance but overall doesn’t really do much except set up the start of the story and promise great excitement in future issues.

The art in this series, pencilled by Larry Stroman, has an almost older and more retro feel to it. A lot of comics nowadays go for a ‘less is more’ approach but this definitely isn’t the case in this comic. Pages are bursting with action and characters are all shapes and sizes as we see aliens from all over the universe. The art definitely stays strong in this comic, displaying the action very well and, if you don’t mind it getting a bit cluttered at points, delivers the story in a strong, sustainable pace.

Overall, I would be cautious with this comic book if you are a newcomer to the series, perhaps go back and check out the original series to begin with so you have a better feel for who is whom. However, if you are returning to the series then Alien Legion: Uncivil War #1 looks like it is setting up to be an exciting adventure in future issues so this is probably one you will want to grab.

Alien Legion: Uncivil War #1 is released on June 25th by Titan Comics.

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