Writer & Artist: Stuart Jennett
Publisher: Titan Comics
Reviewer: Rob Patey (aka Optimous Douche – Ain’t It Cool News)
What happens when A Sound of Thunder meets Inglorious Bastards? CHRONOS COMMANDOS is what! While I hate trite slug-lines like that, sadly that is what helps sell books. And I will gladly prostitute my own convictions to help get good comics into people’s hands.
The first thing you need to know is that this book is a visual feast. Opening in a time when dinosaurs reigned supreme, the initial pages are lusher than Jurassic Park. It’s an Alex Ross like painting style that thwarts the often heard saying, paint doesn’t move like pencils. This fucker is kinetic as exhibited when the WWII style time sphere first drops out of the sky on top of a T-Rex (or Velociraptor – I don’t know, I missed the whole Dinosaur craze – let’s leave it at Big Ass leeeeezard).
“WWII time sphere?” I know it threw me at first too, but that’s the great thing about CHRONOS COMMANDOS, every page bitch slaps you with a brand new surprise. Stay with me…what if instead of the world’s greatest minds spending the 40’s working on the bomb, they instead focused on temporal mechanics. So instead of world domination Hitler set his sights on the domination of all things in all times.
It’s a great concept that never gets mired in a Hickmanesque explanations of how. Not that I mind those things, but I know many who get turned off by pseudo-science babble. Instead everybody…and I mean everybody including a scientist with a resemblance to ole’ Albert Einstein is packing heat and kicking ass. I was truly surprised at how much action and depth Jennett was able to achieve, in modern comics it always seems to be a case of one or the other on a per issue basis.
The protagonist has a name, but I walked away simply calling him Sarge. Grizzled, but caring for the fucktards he commands, I had some genuine LOL moments at the authenticity of dialog they shared while traipsing across pre-human Earth. Good ole Nazi slander works whether in the 1940’s or the land before time. There was also genuine heart when we see the other one competent troop member end up as Dino Food.
The Nazis also gave me some genuine guffaws. Their whole purpose for this particular mission was simply to shoot a propaganda film heralding their superiority of the time stream. PR wins wars and midget dictators seem to know this better than anyone else.
I’ll read pretty much any Sci-Fi slant on historical events and I do give leeway to bad execution sometimes for the sake of a cool concept. CHRONOS COMMANDOS those is not one of those cases. If anything I put this on par with masters of “What If” history like Harry Turtledove.
CHRONOS COMMANDOS can be found in this month’s Previews for retailers and you can expect to put it in your hot little hands this Summer.