Plastic Man #1 Review: A Delightful Lead and a Fun Story

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Plastic Man has returned to Cole City to investigate the crime that gave him his powers. This leads Eel O'Brian to being beaten to a bloody pulp by his old running mates, Suitcase Mizzola, Brutal Benny Turlin, and Dizzy Darren Fitzroy. This was just a ploy, of course, and Plastic Man chases after his old partners in crime to investigate who killed the security guard who was killed when Plastic Man was made.

Plastic Man #1 cover by Aaron Lopresti
Plastic Man #1 cover by Aaron Lopresti

Gail Simone does it again with a charming and all-around endearing resurrection of the eponymous Plastic Man in his own miniseries. I never had much experience with the character up until Terrifics and this comic, and this has sealed the deal on me being a fan of the character.

Not only is Eel O'Brian funny in this comic, he's also endearing. He has a not-so-serious approach to fighting crime, but he has a genuine concern for the people around him and that he's doing the right thing. He seems willing to step into places that the likes of Superman wouldn't, but it's more on the level of seedy than genuinely amoral. For example, working at and living above a strip club isn't bad, but you wouldn't see Clark Kent doing it—though with my beloved Brian Michael Bendis at the helm of Kal-El, who knows?

In any case, Eel has a wonderful personality, and that's enough to carry the comic on its own. The pacing is solid. The plot gets a bit convoluted towards the end, but it's not bad. On the whole, the narrative is excellent.

Plastic Man #1 art by Adriana Melo and Kelly Fitzpatrick
Plastic Man #1 art by Adriana Melo and Kelly Fitzpatrick


Adriana Melo covers the artwork, and it looks great. It has a detailed, almost noire aesthetic to it which fits the story excellently. The one drawback is that, after a certain draw distance, the faces turn into undetailed ovals with dot eyes and line mouths characters. It doesn't take a lot of distance for this to happen, and it's very distracting in some scenes. That's the only real flaw, and it doesn't sink the visuals. Kelly Fitzpatrick is the color artist, and the palette is a solid balance of a dark world and the vibrant reds and yellows of Plastic Man's costume. It works very well.

Plastic Man #1 is a delightful read with a great protagonist, excellent dialogue, and a swift and energetic pacing. The art has its flaws, but it mostly looks great. This one earns a strong recommendation. Give it a read.

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About Joshua Davison

Josh is a longtime super hero comic fan and an aspiring comic book and fiction writer himself. He also trades in videogames, Star Wars, and Magic: The Gathering, and he is also a budding film buff. He's always been a huge nerd, and he hopes to contribute something of worth to the wider geek culture conversation. He is also happy to announce that he is the new Reviews Editor for Bleeding Cool. Follow on Twitter @joshdavisonbolt.
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