Thursday, July 7, 2022

#IReadsYou: GEIGER #5


STORY: Geoff Johns
ART: Gary Frank
COLORS: Brad Anderson
LETTERS: Rob Leigh
EDITOR: Pat McCallum and Brian Cunningham
COVER: Gary Frank with Brad Anderson
VARIANT COVER ARTISTS: Jerry Ordway with Brad Anderson; Paul Pelletier and Norm Rapmund with Alex Sinclair; Gary Frank with Brad Anderson
32pp, Colors, 3.99 U.S. (August 2021)

Rated “T+/Teen Plus”

Geiger created by Geoff Johns and Gary Frank

“God Bless America”

Geiger is a comic book series from writer Geoff Johns and artist Gary Frank.  Published by Image Comics, Geiger is set on a dying Earth in the years after a nuclear war ravaged the planet and focuses on a “walking bomb” hero.  Colorist Brad Anderson and letterer Rob Leigh complete the series' creative team.

Geiger is set 20 years after the nuclear conflict known as the “Unknown War” ravaged the planet, turning Earth into a dying world.  In the state of Nevada, desperate outlaws battle for survival in a world of rapidly disappearing resources and supplies.  In Boulder City, Nevada, there resides the fearsome man known by many names:  Joe Glow, The Meltdown Man, and the Walking Bomb, to name a few.  But before the war, he was simply a man named Tariq Geiger.  So who or what is Geiger, now?

Geiger #5 (“God Bless America”) opens with a recitation of the story up to this point.  Then, after a hard encounter with “the Organ People,” Geiger is in a state of radioactive disarray, and the children, Hailee and Henry, are in the custody of remnants of the old world.  These mysterious new figures are excited to now have the “nuclear football” that was in the children's possession, but they want to know how their late mother, Carolina, came to have it.

When a heartbreaking revelation causes Geiger to break with this happy paradise, their new pals call upon an ancient warrior.  Meanwhile, the King, formerly “the Prince,” and his “Nuclear Knights” continue to track Geiger.

THE LOWDOWN:  As first issues go, Geiger #1 was mostly an introduction, kind of like a prologue.  It introduced the title character, Geiger, giving readers a look at who he was in the past and a glance at who he is now.  Geiger #2 went inside Las Vegas.  With Geiger #3, Geoff Johns began to excavate the heart of the character drama and the passion of old grudges and conflicts.  With Geiger #4, Johns executed his first game changer – in terms of Geiger and the children's fates – and readers got a Mad Max 2/The Road Warrior action sequence.

Geiger #5 is the penultimate issue of the series' first story arc.  Geoff Johns offers the series' most emotionally fulfilling chapter, and he elevates the children from mere pawns into major characters that deliver turning points in the narrative.

As in the third issue, Gary Frank's art captures the emotions and passions of intimate moments and of pivotal scenes in Geiger #5.  The storytelling pours the hotter blood of the relationships of the past that shape the present of Geiger's narrative.  Close-ups are painfully familiar, but that makes this fifth issue in which things seem to matter the most.

I'm all in on Geiger now, and I highly recommend it.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Geoff Johns and Gary Frank will want to check out Geiger.

★★★★+ out of 4 stars

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

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