Imagine my surprise when I saw that there was going to be a Metal Men series released. I’ve always wanted to read a book for Metal Men, and this was the perfect opportunity to see what’s so great about these characters. I’ll hand it to DC, this year they have made some admirable choices in solo books which focus on characters you don’t get to see too often in the grand scheme of things. .
Now as someone new to Metal Men, I was interested to see how this creative team would pull me into the story. It’s safe to say that in general the Metal Men aren’t the most notable heroes in the DC Universe. So this is one of those times where you want the first issue to introduce the characters as if this is the first time you met them. To that extent, I would say that I was of two different minds about the approach to this introduction. One on hand you do walk away from this issue with a solid grasp of who the Metal Men are in concept. You don’t get to know them too personally, but you do understand the intention of their creation through the perspective of Doc Magnus. On the other hand,there was a lot of vagueness to the story which might leave you feeling like this book was arching over from something else previous that we more than likely did not read.
At the very least, we did walk away from this with the gist that Doc Magnus like most intellects such as himself is not a good person. That was necessary, while also being not too surprising if you have met others like him in the DCU. However, if you were jumping into this anticipating more Meta Men than the doctor monologuing, then you might be left disappointed. With that said, credit where it is due that we did get to know one character with depth. To sum things up, understanding Magnus was almost the same as understanding the Metal Men. Especially when it came to the twist thrown at us nearing the end of the issue.
Another issue I found with this was the inclusion of the Challenger Mountain. Its nothing I haven’t heard of before, but to other readers, what is it? What is the value in this mountain which as far as anyone knows from this first issue is both sentient and holding rare resources? This created more questions than the immersion that we needed from this first issue in order to come back for more.This is not to say it doesn’t connect to the plot, but this was very bold for something which not everyone is familiar with.
One of the best things this book has going for it is a capable art team. The team of Shane Davis, Michelle Delecki, and Jason Wright did a standout job with the interior work. When you pick up a book like Metal Men, you definitely expect that the artwork is going to wow you in some way. Now I’m not going to say that we get the most spectacular visuals in this first issue, but there is an appreciation to the level of detail that you get from the pencils, inks, and colors. Great focus, depth, and it never hurts to get full renderings. Especially when this first issue sets most of this between Challenger Mountain and Doc Magnus’ lab.