Comics : Imperfects #4

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This review was first published on: 2005.

Background...

This comic is an outgrowth of one of Marvel's licensors, Electronic Arts (EA), rather than being generated by the comicbook division. That said - the comic is essentially a novelization of the EA game (not that that's a bad thing). At any rate, in association with Marvel's brand-new game production division, EA developed this combat videogame, which forms a fighting franchise between several "A"-List Marvel heroes and a group of brand-new characters developed by EA's creative designers specifically for the game itself.

In Marvel Nemesis: Rise of the Imperfects (both the game and the comic), an alien genius, named Professor Roekel, (something of a nutball, actually) is attempting to create a warrior class of, perfect fighting machines that will be subject to his control (apparently he didn't see any of the Alien films, for if he did, he would have seen where this is all heading). At any rate, even though his creations are masterful and powerful, when the mad scientist begins his experiments with earthlings, he and his creations must contend with both a second group of alien warriors as well as the Marvel superheroes.

In Detail...

"Rise of the Imperfects: Part 4"
Imperfects #4
Aug 2005 : SM Guest
Summary: Spider-Man Appears
Editor:  Mark Paniccia
Writer:  Greg Pak
Artist:  Renato Arlem
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Review

As we start off this issue, Spider-Man, Storm, and Wolverine are at Four Freedoms Plaza as Reed Richards is trying to get a handle on the substance that they were forced to ingest. Daredevil joins them, informing them that he and Electra were tracking down the alien scientist when she was captured and the ship itself just punched its way out of an underground bunker in an effort to escape.

Storm who is joined by a newly arriving Iron Man take to the sky in an attempt to prevent the ship's escape. Meanwhile Spidey, Logan and Daredevil follow in what appears to be an Avengers Quinjet, as piloted by Spidey. Needless to say he isn't doing a very good job, and Logan, who is still on edge from the foreign substance, pops his claws and goes after Spidey. DD attempts to stop Wolverine from skewering our webbed hero, only to have Logan turn on him. After a brief encounter and the resulting stand off, Logan's calmer side takes reasserts itself, and he calms down.

By now, Storm has caught up with Roekel's ship, and is attempting to force it to land by summing up a lightning storm. As she too is still suffering from the after-effects of the drug, overkill is the watchword and we're talking a force 5 storm here. Iron Man (who wasn't part of the initial experiment) is worried and tries to calm the mutant mistress down, but can't get through to her. Thus, the newly calmed, Logan, exits the Quinjet and launches himself at his teammate in the hopes to reach through to her "normal" self.

Fortunately, he is successful, and Ororo keels him aloft as they chat. Iron Man and the Quinjet come alongside the hovering pair as they all confer. Meanwhile, Roekel's ship has mad its way to some south sea island where his enemies have landed and seem to have been hunting the local natives. It is there that Roekel dumps off his super warriors to dispose of the enemies that have been chasing him for a millennia. As with any group of individuals who suddenly come into great powers and abilities far beyond those of mortal men, this group of enhanced fighters have already begun to name themselves, taking on code names like Hazmat, Fault Zone, Solara, and Brigade (although I'd imagine that Rob Liefeld might have something to say about that last one).

On the ground, the group get their bearings and then set out to find the Doctor's enemies, so that they can test their new-found powers, and kill stuff. Suddenly there is a fiery explosion off in the distance, marking the presence of their prey. We shift focus to find the local natives in a firefight with the aliens and getting their collective arses properly kicked by the hi-tech aliens. Still, one female native warrior seems to be holding her own as she attempts to rally her clansmen.

It is then that the enhanced humans (the Imperfects) arrive attacking both the aliens and native tribesmen as well; only they decide to save the human girl warrior who has demonstrated the greatest skill amongst the Earthers. The resulting free-for-all has each group fighting off the other two as they all attempt to achieve their own goals. This battle results in setting the entire island ablaze killing nearly everyone.

Back at Four Freedoms Plaza, Storm, Wolverine, Spidey, and various members of the FF talk out their feelings as they attempt to resolve their inner conflicts and get a handle on these new-found feelings of inadequacy caused by having been the subjects of Roekel's alien experimentation. Reed is still attempting to understand the entity (which appears to be some form of sentient life form) that was injected into his comrades.

After the battle on the Island, Roekel is still not satisfied with his creations and wants to up the ante by increasing the enhancements, as well as continuing to experiment on Electra who has been his prisoner since the end of the previous issue. Only this is the end of this issue, so we will all have to wait 30 days to learn her fate.

In General...

As I've mentioned, this entire issue (as is the series itself) is all deep greens and blues (as if the colorist is only allowed to use this end of the color spectrum for his work). Plus there seems to be an excessive amount of "ranting in the Marvel Style" of "oh woe is me, I have these powers and abilities and am still incomplete, if only..." Yeah, yeah, yeah. I'd buy better into this rant if I hadn't heard it all before and if I didn't already know that - in spite of everything that the characters come to learn about themselves or their powers and abilities, everyone will never carry over any of this new-found understanding about themselves to their regular titles.

Overall Rating...

The book is a six issue series, so it is like a basketball game where only the last five minutes (final issue) counts. Still, even having all of the objections that I do, the series is not entirely without merit, and I am starting to get into the thing. Only, I wish it was a four-issue run, and we could have been spared some of the extraneous ranting (as well as kept $8.50 in our pockets)