Story & Letters by: Ryan Ferrier Art by: Valentin Ramon Published by: IDW Publishing
The battle for Earth is heating up, the invading alien menace is seemingly in the ascendancy and our one hope, our last chance against annihilation is a slacker ‘bot marked for death by his own kind. Meet D4VE… He’s a former war hero, now though he is unfortunately in the sorry position of being jobless, facing termination, his relationship is in tatters and somehow, with a massive alien invasion, it is down to him to rescue everyone.
Here in issue 4 of this series we have all the elements in play – the story and characters are all well set, the juvenile touches of humour, the robot populace and their humanistic attitudes and aspirations. If this book were taken as a straight science fiction, it would be passable, the fact that it doesn’t take itself too seriously somewhat saves the narrative. With the inclusion of the low brow humour the piece is moderately better than the sum of all of its’ parts.
Art for the book comes from Valentin Ramon, and despite the generic aspect of some of the panels, the pages are entertaining on the eye, some of the action could do with a little more energy, but the dynamism is sacrificed for the inclusion of a joke or two. In terms of this issue, the pace starts out okay but falls off a little in the mid section of the book. The plot is a little weaker than previous issues, feeling aimless at times. The only real downside to the story of D4VE is a by-product of the feel of the book – the protagonists are robots, yes, they are humanised, and they face a dire situation, but in that there is a distinct lack of dramatic impetus. Given the nature of robots, the synthetic aspect of their ‘lives’ the reader doesn’t engage with empathy for them. Swapping drama for humor hurts that element of the book – though ultimately the story is one of fun, so while it is drama-lite the comic is still a passable story and entertaining read.