Published: April 11th, 2017
Written by: Jeff Lemire
Art by: Dean Ormsto
Dark Horse Books, 152 Pages
I didn’t know what to expect from Black Hammer but in the last year and a half that it has been out, it has been pretty popular and even spawned a few spinoffs within its unique universe.
I have historically loved Dark Horse’s original titles. I’ve read Hellboy and B.P.R.D. on and off for years, I was a massive fan of Umbrella Academy and have occasionally checked out other titles. Plus, I was always happy with their Star Wars books for the long period of time that they had the publishing rights to that megafranchise.
I saw that this was a series by Jeff Lemire, who had some good runs on some major titles over the years, most notably Superboy, Justice League Dark, Animal Man, Green Arrow, Teen Titans: Earth One, Hawkeye, Old Man Logan, Moon Knight and Bloodshot.
Originally, Lemire was going to do the art for this book but he’s a busy guy, so the art was created by Dean Ormsto.
I love that this is a book about a superhero team but it is probably the most nontraditional superhero team book that I have ever read. The story follows a group of former heroes, trapped in a Twilight Zone type of small town. They have been stuck there for years with no way of getting back to their own reality.
The story is highly emotional, as each character tries to deal with their new reality in their own way. The most interesting character is Gail, who was a superhero woman that grew into old age but is now trapped in her superhero persona: a small girl. She has lived a full life, enjoyed sexual maturity but is cursed with an adult mind and needs in the body of an elementary school student.
All of the other characters are interesting too but I felt that Gail’s story had the most to offer, at least only having read the first story arc.
I’m looking forward to keeping up with this series. So far, it’s pretty good. Time will tell how it develops and if it can grow legs. So far, things look pretty promising.
Pairs well with: I’d have to assume Black Hammer, Vol. 2. There are also some similarities in style with other Dark Horse series Umbrella Academy, Hellboy and B.P.R.D.