blogging by Andrew Wickliffe

Do a Powerbomb (2022) #4

Do a Powerbomb  4I’ve been getting the necromancer host of the Death Lyfe inter-dimensional wrestling tournament wrong; it’s Nectron, not Necro. So not an ape named Ape situation.

This issue’s relatively self-contained, despite a big reveal in the last few pages. It’s just the story of Lona and Cobrasun’s next wrestling match in the tournament. Creator Daniel Warren Johnson opens the issue with a flashback establishing their opponents this issue, some real mean dudes from some destroyed dimension. They had a warrior capable of taking out Nectron, but he died, so these wrestlers need to win Nectron’s tournament to get Nectron to resurrect the warrior to slay him. Him being Nectron.

Johnson gets through that backstory briskly, punctuating the flashback with a brilliant sports training montage sequence. It’s got the cadence of a Rocky movie, except Johnson’s doing it with composition and text. Beautiful work. And he knows it because he does it again a little later for Lona and Cobrasun. They’ve decided to work together, even though she hates him because he killed her mother, and he feels very guilty about it, with him being Lona’s father and the woman he killed’s lover and all.

We even get more backstory about how they fell in love—or at least the implication of how they fell in love—as a tag team before Lona was born. Obviously. Though she doesn’t know it. And the big reveal isn’t the parentage; Johnson’s clearly keeping that one until later.

Lona and Cobrasun’s wrestling match is intense and vicious, but nothing compared to the next one, presumably the first other match they’ve seen. They’re also surprised—like I was surprised—to discover there’s another team from Earth. Johnson very quickly introduces the other team, establishes their stakes, and gets them in the ring for their match. The match actually literally interrupts Johnson establishing the stakes. Johnson’s got great instincts for when the exposition has done its job, and he should move on to action.

So it’s a self-contained action issue with major story threads weaved throughout.

It’s not the best issue of the series; Johnson doesn’t do anything jaw-dropping; it’s just an excellent, still excelling issue of Powerbomb. However, even when Johnson has a (relatively) simple issue to execute, he still bristles with energy.

Powerbomb’s electric. And next issue seems like it’s going to kick major ass.

One response to “Do a Powerbomb (2022) #4”

  1. Vernon W

    The next issue kicks ass the way a great sports story should. Electric is an excellent description of the series and its protagonists. Johnson’s art perfectly captures the emotion and energy of cosmic wrestling with ultimate stakes in a way no other comic I’ve seen. Huzzah!

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