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The Little King and The Old Worm
Pax Romana by Jonathan Hickman
© 2013 James LaFond
2009, Image Comics, Berkeley, CA
My education into the modern comic scene continues. I have avoided comics primarily because I always thought Super Man was evil and Batman was a pedophile. I just never conceived of any hero of mine wearing spandex. Erique, who works for Diamond Comics, has been lending me samples to review on the site, and I think, in hopes of me getting a grasp on the only print medium that has a significant male readership.
Pax Romana has that type of patchy sourcebook layout which was so off putting for me in Watchmen. But this story is so gritty, so hard-edged, and so science-fiction, that I quickly put those middle-aged gripes about small print aside.
Jonathan Hickman sinks a lot of research and character development into what appears to be a one-shot comic. I was truly impressed with the concept. Without giving too much away the Pax Romana premise is very similar to my Sunset Saga premise, which is the use of genetically engineered time travelers to go back in time and cause such a political sea change as to generate another branch of time, an alternate history. His approach was more military than mine and very mature, focusing on social evolution and the religious-technology conundrum.
Pax Romana is so good I don’t want to give any more away. Mister Hickman brought a historic novelist’s level of research to the table and sunk more character development into supporting characters than classic sci-fi authors often put into their protagonists.
Thanks Erique. I’m a geek now!
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