I liked these, but I have some issues with the first four issues. Duncan Rouleau is a rare talent, one who can write and draw with equal facility, or so it seems from this title. The art is charming, if a bit too cartoony for my taste, but on the other hand, that does make the fluidity of the Metal Men more believable. In the original stories drawn by Ross Andru and Mike Esposito, I always found it a bit odd that all the Metal Men could so easily change their shapes. Sure, it made sense for Mercury, but the others are made of metals that are quite hard at normal temperatures. And Mercury was surprisingly solid some of the time, not to mention that red color, where did that come from? (Okay, so maybe I’m thinking about this too much!)
The writing is quite good in interactions between the characters, but the plotting is confusing, jumping around in time and viewpoint frequently, introducing characters and villains with little explanation, dropping the reader in the middle of action sequences without any setup. I found my favorite parts were the flashbacks to the early years of Doc Magnus as he created the concepts that became the Metal Men. I suppose rereading would help the complex storyline come into focus, but as a reader, I don’t think that should be a requirement to understand what’s going on.
I certainly can’t fault Rouleau for slacking, this book is crammed full of intriguing ideas. I just wish they were given a more linear development and room to sink in before such a dizzying, breakneck race through each issue. I’ll keep reading, maybe it will all come together for me by the end of this eight-issue series.