It’s not easy to essentially pimp a character who’s about to be introduced into a money-farting franchise like Deadpool, but that’s exactly what superstar scribe Gail Simone had to do with the premiere issue of Domino.
New readers are introduced to Neena Thurman, the plucky mercenary who won our hearts back in X-Force and Uncanny X-Force, whose luck-based powers always seem to leave her coming out on top at the end. Longtime readers are re-introduced to the plucky Domino in waves of exposition and explanation that often felt overpowering at times. Somewhere in between the reader gets to enjoy some pithy dialogue and a bit of rollicking action.
David Baldeón, whose work is like a mix of Pepe Larraz & Tradd Moore, does have a unique physicality to his work, one that has a fluid acceleration. His rain-soaked action sequences are bombastic, giving a baseline for what to expect from Domino, Diamondback, and Outlaw (more on this later). His party scene, chock-full of awesome cameos and descriptive body language, make the reader feel like he or she is really part of things. However, the way he portrays characters’ eyes is just…off. It’s just a bit too cartoonish for my tastes, what with them teeny weeny pupils.
The color work by Jesus Arbutov is quite delightful – he does a great job of catching the emotion in several very diverse environments. The work in the timber yard in the rain is just beautiful displaying lowlights, spotlights, and the aforementioned rain in a way that really makes the pages pop. Seriously, Arbutov absolutely killed it in this issue.
Simone also injects her trademark witticisms and wisecracks, as well as includes characters whose voices she really helped refine, like Agent X, Deadpool, and Outlaw. Using those characters in this book was SUCH a phenomenal choice as her Agent X run and Deadpool runs are extremely underrated. However, it’s a huge tease, as most of the issue is spent using first person narrative (which Simone generally does very well) to constantly inform new readers who Domino is and what she’s all about: it’s a lot more telling than showing, so to speak.
Again, this had to be a little bit frustrating for a writer of Simone’s caliber, having to do the typical first issue/origin spiel instead of getting right into the meat of the narrative, but the end result isn’t bad at all. In fact, coupled with Greg Land’s playfully beautiful cover, you have a really cool intro to what looks to be a very fast paced and bat#*$% series.