Saturday, December 2, 2017

Review: MOSAIC #1


[This review was originally posted on Patreon.]

WRITER: Geoffrey Thorne
ARTIST: Khary Randolph
COLORS: Emilio Lopez
LETTERS: VC's Joe Sabino
COVER: Stuart Immonen
VARIANT COVERS: John Tyler Christopher; Marco D'Alfonso; Mike Deodato with Frank Martin; Khary Randolph; Pasqual Ferry with Frank D'Armata
36pp, Color, $4.99 U.S. (December 2016)

Rated T+

Episode One: “Mood Indigo”

Out of Civil War II.  Part of Marvel Comics' initiative “NOW!”  Here, comes Marvel's newest Black superhero, Mosaic, and he is the star of his own comic book, entitled Mosaic, of course.  It is written by Geoffrey Thorne; drawn by Khary Randolph; colored by Emilio Lopez; and lettered by Joe Sabino.

Mosaic #1 (“Mood Indigo”) introduces Morris Sackett, maybe the best professional basketball player in the world.  He has led the New York Stride to five championships in five seasons.  As far as Morris is concerned, he is the sole reason that the Stride has won five titles.  However, exposure to Terrigen mists changes Morris in ways that are shocking.  One of the newest Inhumans is about to lose his physical form while inheriting many more.

According to what I have read, writer Geoffrey Thorne and artist Khary Randolph want to explode stereotypes for Black superheroes when it comes to Morris Sackett a.k.a. Mosaic.  I don't know what those stereotypes are.  Even with the relatively small number of Black superheroes in both the Marvel and DC Comics universes, characters are unique and mostly fully formed.  Black Panther is not like Storm is not like Luke Cage/Power Man, and I never thought that Cyborg was like Black Lightning.

The stereotype of Black superheroes is that they are stereotypical.  They are not all noble Negroes in the tradition of Civil Rights activists, nor are they sullen anti-heroes out to get the system.  Under the guiding hand of comics most skilled writers, there have been some really good Black Panther and Blade comic books – to name a few of a few.  The reality (not stereotype) is that many Black superheroes have been featured in comic books in which the writers have those assignments because they are someone's friend more so than because they are good storytellers.  Black superheroes have not been stereotypes; they simply have been in badly written (and sometimes poorly drawn) comic books.

Mosaic #1 suggests that Thorne is a good writer, although his “street lingo” leaves something to be desired.  I give most of the credit for the success of Mosaic #1 to artist Khary Randolph.  This first issue has a lively visual and graphical style that mimics the energy and movement of animated films.  Randolph's art is both stylish and earthy, giving Mosaic a vibe that is different from just about everything else Marvel is publishing.

I'm ready for more and recommend this title.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

The text is copyright © 2016 Leroy Douresseaux. All Rights Reserved. Contact this blog for reprint and syndication rights and fees.


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