Quantum: Rock of Ages #5

Posted: Tuesday, November 15, 2005
By: Darren Schroeder

Cover of Quantum: Rock of Ages #5 Writer(s): Philip Clark (writer and greyscales)
Artist(s): James Rodriguez (artist and greyscales), Supriya Kalay (inks). Cover colored by Jackie Teixeira with assistance from Dave Ryan.
Publishers: Dreamchild Press
From: USA
Price: $2.99(US)

The random assortment of would-be heroes who have traversed the multiple universes in previous issues get a chance to discuss the events so far and to try and clarify just what the heck is going on, while events in two other universes suggest things won't be staying quiet for long.

This issue keeps the plot rolling along nicely as the group of super powered folks gains a new member. Exposition takes up most of their time as the latest reality they find themselves in is explained (The Kennedy Brothers and Martin Luther King avoided assassination attempts and ushered in a period of stability and enlightenment in the US) and the Doctor who brought the team together is taken to task for his reluctance to fill them in on his plans.

All this chat isn't as bad as you might think, with the exchanges between characters flowing freely, spiced up with the occasional piece of humor. All this talk hasn't left a lot of time for action, so none of the characters gets a chance to really make an impression or develop beyond their function in the team. They are waiting for things to happen instead of instigating events, spending too much time standing around listening to each other. We don't get any idea what's going on in their heads with some of them getting almost nothing to do.

The villain of this issue doesn't suffer from this restraint, finding time as he does to communicate with an unidentified traitor (I think I know who it is), and dealing with some staffing issues in his company. The dark suit and shades look is a bit tired, but he's a mean SOB who grabs your attention.

The key to what keeps all the talking heads bearable is the great art team. James' layouts are varied without ever making the reader dizzy; the pencils and inks are coherent and attractive, with some strikingly beautiful female characters and a fair does of handsome males as well, making it a real treat for the eyes. On top of this the greyscale "coloring" is some of the most effective you'll see. I hope Phillip knows what a great bunch of collaborators he has on board, 'cause they really are doing a fine job.

In a Word: Dependable.

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