Story: Zac Gorman
Art: CJ Cannon (illustrations) and Ryan Hill (colours)
Yet another television property gets it’s own comic-book. That’s a comparison most people will make given the proliferation of the practice with shows like Transformers and various Cartoon Network shows – but make no mistake, this was NOT your average TV show and so I think it’s fair to say that it’s not going to be quite like the others of it’s ilk.
Not too many people would have caught the animated series that spawned this comic-book, for you, know that it is the brain-child of Justin Roiland and Dan Harmon (after he was unceremoniously kicked off Community) and is about a super-genius like the ones we see on TV shows and movies, the guys who know everything and are a billion times smarter than the rest of us – except he’s a drunken, drug-addled wierdo. Oh and Morty is his grandson who is constantly terrified and horrified at the adventures he has with Rick. Plus their family – Ricks daugher Beth is Morty’s mom, there’s his father Jerry and older sister Summer who put up with them and have quirks all their own.
The biggest danger with a series as off-beat and strange as this one is that not every writer can do it quite the same way – so it helps to have a writer like Zac Gorman who has previously written his share of quirky comics with Adventure Time, Bravest Warriors and Uncle Grandpa.
He definitely has a real feel for the material as Rick and Morty go out to prove wrong Jerry’s assertation that Morty needs by using time-tech on an intergalactic stock-market. While in some respects a tad tame and less random than the TV version, the story itself is quite fun I must admit – the dynamic between the main duo being true enough to the source material.
One of the biggest positives (though it’s annoying for other reasons) is that this is not a done-in-one, i.e., the story is continued past one issue. I say this is a good thing because the stories of Rick and Morty tend to be a LOT of detail and craziness and multiple twists and things crammed into its very short run-time and the single-issue comic medium is shorter still so more than one would be desirable to flesh out the kind of crazy story-line this series should be bringing to the table.
The other huge up is the Summer back-up story which I must admit came as a nice little surprise. I can’t say much about it without spoiling such a tiny tale, but it’s quick, clever and very enjoyable and I hope to see more.
The good thing about the artwork is that it looks like the show. That’s about it, it wasn’t terribly exciting besides that.
What’s not so good:
The story itself is not bad and the main characters are pretty much themselves – but there’s definitely something missing in this incarnation. There’s a banter, a dialogue, a snappy-ness that a video version of something can have that either doesn’t translate too well to a non-video medium like this or is just not done so well. Either way, it slows down the whole thing and for a fan of the show, this will be a down-side.
The other bit negative is that this seems to be trying to go for a kind of regular comic look and for a quirky and strange source as this one has, that seems like a waste. By playing more with layout and flow and cramming and spreading out as needed, I think this could have come across way better than it did.
The Last Word:
A good, solid adaptation of an understandably hard-to-adapt and strange TV series, the comic is enjoyable and will be fun for both fans of the show and people with a slightly kooky sense of humour.
It could definitely do with some work though and I hope that this is just teething pains as they find their feet in a new medium.
Story Score: 7 / 10
Art Score: 6 / 10
Overall Score: 6.5 / 10