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The Vision is the first Marvel comic in years that I can say deserves the amount of praise that other, lesser series have been getting. I won’t name any names, but there are certain titles out right now getting the press that less-praised, actual quality, series have not been. The Vision #1, from writer Tom King and artist Gabriel Walta, might not last the longest, but it is one of the most exciting titles the publisher has out.
This is Tom King’s first Marvel work and, speaking as a fan of Grayson and The Omega Men, it’s always worrying when writers cross-publishers. You don’t know if they’re going to be wasted, or if they’ll be given more constraints, but thankfully this put all of those fears to rest. King goes all out and continues to prove that he knows how to use narration boxes – or when not to use them at all. It’s hard to describe, but I think the best way is with a paraphrasing of Guillermo Del Toro.
When trying to create tension, when trying to build up the audience, you never let up until the perfect moment. What that leads to is the moment you do let up, which is a release, be it shock or laughter. It’s purely cathartic. Reading this issue that is the main thematic concept that comes to the reader’s head first. I’m not going into the issue and the plot so much, because it is something that has to be experienced without bias. King’s skewing is what needs to be known beforehand.
Gabriel Walta’s artwork, with Jordie Bellaire’s colors, is the perfect compliment to King’s writing. There’s a gentle touch to all of it, but it’s also incredibly cold and detached. There’s really no better way to portray a series about a group of robots who are trying to be a family. It’s not going to be all hunky-dory and happy. There are going to be some hardship around the way. The genius in this is that while it does succeed in being cold, it’s the kind you want to warm up.
It’s the expressions that sell the whole affair, a quiet sadness and a saccharine backdrop to it all. The entire backbone of the series is to sell itself as one thing while really being another, which necessitates a versatile style of art, which was described above, and color. Bellaire is no slouch either. When combined we get a series that could fool even the most savvy readers if bereft of the dialogue and narration. It’s difficult to say more, but it’s a perfect storm.
I didn’t want to get much into this issue because it has to be experienced on a personal level. There’s twist and turns in terms of plot development and characters that’s not really what one might expect. It’s definitely not shallow either, but rather makes all of these things hit harder that I’ve felt from a Marvel book in a long, long, time. This is definitely a book to watch and hopefully it gets its due.