21st Mar2015

‘Masked: Vol. 1 – Anomalies’ Review

by Richard Axtell

Written by Serge Lehman | Art by Stephane Crety | Published by Titan Comics | Format: Hardback, 48pp

Masked-1-cover

A not-too-distant future… A solider returns home, having discovered that his peacekeeping mission was anything but… Ravaged psychologically by war, his homecoming is as strange and terrifying as any war. The once familiar sites of his city are now infested with ‘anomalies’ – sentient robots growing in size and awareness, and now attacking humans!

What I really like about the first volume of Masked is that it introduces the main characters, sets up enough about its world to wet your appetite (future France!), gives you little hints that something is up through the form of ‘anomalies’, machines which seem to grow out of nowhere, gets into some serious action and then… boom comics over. I almost screamed at the heavens when I reached the end.

The writer, Serge Lehman, has done an excellent job, drip feeding information in this book to really build up the excitement and leave the reader hungry for more. I wish I had the next volume already, just so I could see what happens! To me, that is the sign of a really well written comic, it can draw you right into the world and have you empathise with the characters in one issue.

When this book began, I was worried that it would be more of the same non-stop action with a cheesy hero leading everyone to victory. There is nothing wrong with that, but it can get a bit samey reading the same themes over and over again. Thankfully, Masked doesn’t give you that. After an explosive opening it sets about showing you the life of it’s main character Frank, recovering and trying to live a normal life in a very un-normal (is that a word?) world. He’s broken, he’s shaken but something is interesting in him and we don’t know why. (Creepy music starts to play in the background)

This is built up even more by artist Stéphane Créty whose depictions of a futuristic Paris, flying cars and scary robots really capture the imagination. At first I admit, I thought it would be a standard superhero story, but if Masked continues on the path it is on, it promises to be quite an exciting adventure set in a new and interesting world.

Overall, a strong start to a series I have high hopes for! Something for sci-fi, superhero and action fans so keep your eyes on this one guys. It’s going places.

Masked: Vol.1 – Anomalies is released on April 1st, courtesy of Titan Comics.

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