"The Strange Talent of Luther Strode" Vol 1 from Image Comics -
Luther Strode is a tall, lanky, unpopular nerd of a guy that hangs around with Pete, his equally unpopular friend with a nutty sense of humor. But there is more to Luther than meets the eye - he and his mother are on the run from a violent past - more specifically, they are running from his brute of a father. Tired of being pushed around by his dad and the school bully, in desperation, Luther orders an instructional manual for bodybuilding from the internet. In his wildest dreams, he never pictured what following that manual would do for him - soon he is bigger, stronger, and more focused than ever before. However, the manual has other, unforeseen effects: somehow he has gained a preternatural danger sense, hightened reflexes, hightened senses and agility, superhuman strength, speed and durability, and a wicked healing factor. Unfortunately, all this comes with a bloodlust that Luther fights to keep in check. As Luther struggles with his newfound abilities, donning a mask to become a superhero, he gains the interest of a man called the Librarian, the man who sent Luther the instructional manual. He seeks to teach Luther to use his gifts, to become like himself, and like others before him, with the talents necessary to use the manual, to bring the world to its knees. If Luther wants to keep all that is good in his world, he'll have to fight like never before...Or the Librarian will brutally, mercilessly and gleefully murder everyone he loves.
"The Strange Talent of Luther Strode" collects issues #1 through #6 of the title of the same name. It is a cool, hip, funny and action-packed superhero origin story, with a bit of teen romance, and a whole lot of violence and gore mixed in for good measure. Justin Jordan writes what seems to be a more modern, way more dark take on Spider-Man - Luther Strode is Peter Parker with a bit of bloodlust, and with a violent antagonist that isn't going to be arrested, or settle for the half-measures of beating the protagonist down. Either Luther takes it to the max, or he looses everything and everyone he loves. Tradd Moore's art is cartoony-cool; Moore's work with make you chuckle, and when the action and gore start, it might make you wretch. This book has all the elements of a really great superhero origin story, populated by characters that are just so fun and interesting that I was instantaneously invested in every single one. "The Talent of Luther Strode" vol 1 is simply stellar. Loved it!
RATING: 10 out 10.
Disclaimer: NOT FOR KIDS OR THOSE OF WEAK DISPOSITIONS. Gore, violence, some nudity (dead body), some sexual themes, and strong language.
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