Images © Mike Baron and Steve Rude.
When I started getting these great hardcovers I thought at first I’d just get the first few, as I remembered the early issues as being really good, but hadn’t retained much detail from them. Here we are at Volume 9, and I’m still getting them and enjoying them thoroughly. Mike Baron continues to develop and deepen the relationships of the main characters, crafting in Nexus himself an unusual combination of tragic figure, hero, and ordinary man. In this volume he’s given up his powers, which have passed to two of his deadliest enemies, making for some chilling scenes and great drama. Meanwhile, the craziness of Ylum and her polyglot of species and religions that all seem to be either plotting against or at war with each other provides both comic relief and more action.
The best art, as always, is by Steve Rude, here represented in three long issues of the NEXT NEXUS miniseries, while the main series has art mostly by Paul Smith, with one issue each by Neil Hansen and Adam Hughes. The Hughes art is early and not particularly accomplished, especially since we know how much better he’ll get later. But Rude is the one to study and pore over, his art here is top notch.
Highly recommended, but do start with Volume 1.