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The Massive #4 [Dark Horse Comics] Review

Posted on September 10, 2012 AT 09:00pm

The ecological breakdown of the world has come and gone, leaving nothing but destruction in its wake. In Brian Wood’s The Massive, this shift from the normalcy of the world to a complete ecological Armageddon is the difference between a traditional story and one of terrifying reality for the world and, more notably, the crew of The Kapital, a massive ship run by the Ninth Wave, a marine direct action force that has dedicated itself to preserving what is left of the world.

Led by former Blackbell PMC member Callum Israel and his crew, The Kapital is on a mission to save the world, and find its sister ship, The Massive, which, after several weeks, has still not been heard of. In the previous arc, the story took a look into what was dubbed “The Crash”, a series of events that nearly destroyed the entire planet in the wake of massive change in the way the world worked. This trend continues, as information to “The Crash” is revealed intermittently between the telling of the story of Cal and his team. The second arc, “Black Pacific”, starts the crew off in Mogadishu, Bangladesh, which is home to Cal, taking a few subtle twists and turns to get the arc started as they attempt to get supplies, with a familiar face or two popping in.

Brian Wood is telling a careful, meticulous story with this title, giving readers information from both the past and the present, about life post-Crash, and the world during the events. This slow reveal is ultimately rewarding, but does get a bit tedious, with the slow pace making it difficult to stay completely engaged. The various locales and wide scope of the environment makes it interesting, however.

While there have been various comments on the artwork, the team of Garry Brown and Dave Stewart keep things consistent, using dull colors to depict a world that has been ravaged and washed away though the cataclysm. WhileThe Massive doesn’t feature the most detailed of artwork, the profiles of people is very accurate, and that keeps things in perspective of the realistic vibe the book seems to be taking. Not a style that works for everyone, but its fitting for the material.

Summary: The Massive keeps moving the slow and steady route, delivering a steady stream of information in two different time periods, giving the reader a stark contrast of what was and what currently is. The pacing could be a bit better, and the artwork, while very much along the styles of many other Dark Horse titles, does leave a bit to be desired, but fits well in the world it is depicting. All is not well in the post-Crash world, nor is it in The Massive, but while the crew of The Kapital struggle to survive, readers should be pleasantly surprised at how such a slow-moving book is still so interesting.

  • THE GOOD: Interesting Story, Very Detailed Plot
  • THE BAD: Slow Pacing, Little Action

Score: 8.0

Russ Pirozek, known as "Noobcrawler" to some, is a gamer and comic book fan who sometimes gets around to writing for He's also awesome. If someone looked up "awesome" in the dictionary, his picture wouldn't be there, but that's because he's too busy being awesome to pose for a photo.

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