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The Massive #8 [Dark Horse Comics] Review

Posted on January 20, 2013 AT 05:08pm

The latest installment of Brian Wood’s creator owned series The Massive has arrived, and the second part of the three part arc “Subcontinental”, entitled “Schism” is an issue that will change the entire dynamic of the series. With The Kapital‘s sister ship The Massive still missing, Cal Israel and crew have been through a ton since the beginning of the title.

So far, they’ve been attacked, stranded and separated, and now stranded on at Moksha Station, a place that is thought to be a paradise in a post-apocalyptic nightmare world. With The Crash ruining everything, Moksha is the one place that seems to be more utopia than disaster. And with the crew’s attitudes beginning to divide them, things are at a breaking point. At the end of this issue, one member of the Kaptial‘screw makes an incredibly important decision, and it will affect the entire mission of Cal, Mag, and the entire Ninth Wave.

Brian Wood is a behemoth, especially as of late. With all the other work he’s been doing on other projects, he’s putting a concentrated effort on this series, and it’s paying off wonderfully. While this issue doesn’t have a lot of the bonus content that has been in many others (something that wasn’t missed until it was removed from the issue). The writing is top notch, especially given the pivotal plot point that occurs at the end of it. While Cal, the protagonist, wasn’t featured nearly as heavily as he usually is, that wasn’t too much of a bad thing. Some of the other characters have barely been developed, however, so trying to figure them out during their time in the spotlight does take some getting used to.

Garry Brown and Dave Stewart are proving to be great with their portion of the book as well. Brown has been with the series since issue #4, and while the dynamic between his work and Kristian Donaldson is something to look at, it doesn’t detract from the series. In this issue, there is a bit too much emphasis on the dark shadows, especially those that obscure the facial features of the characters. This gets a bit old after awhile, and despite it being a dark environment,  is used a bit too much. Hopefully, once the series changes setting, this happens a bit less and the characters are more visible in the future.

Summary: Brian Wood’s The Massive is hitting a major point in its plot, and so far, Wood and the art team are making an incredible book that fans should be clamoring for every month. While some of the artwork isn’t as well done as it usually is and the bonus content that used to be inside the back of the issue is sorely missed, this is a terrific book that has really hit its stride. This is definitely a book worth checking out as things are really beginning to get interesting.

  • The Good: Great Plot Structure, Terrific Writing
  • The Bad: Overused Shadowing
  • The Ugly: Removed Bonus Content Is Sorely Missed

Score: 8.5

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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