Project I.M.P.A.C.T. #2 Review – A Solid and Effective Sophomore Issue

Oh, Canada! This solid and effective sophomore issue is an excellent mix of law enforcement procedural and superhero team book, with a hint of corporate and government conspiracy behind it, all set in the Great White North. An overabundance of costumed heroes in the United States sent waves of super-powered bad guys looking for colder and less crowded environs. The "big names" in Canadian super-heroism are, at best, laughable ("Voyageur" and "Mary Maple Leaf" — really!). Without any hairy mutants to shove metal skeletons into, the Canadian government instead commissioned a classified septet of "parahuman" response agents to operate in a mostly clandestine fashion and takedown threats to the nation.

 

The cover of Project: I.M.P.A.C.T. #2 with a creative team of Alan Russette, Stephan Petersen, Linda Scott Campbell, Richard Lumsden and published by ADR Comics.
The cover of Project: I.M.P.A.C.T. #2 with a creative team of Alan Russette, Stephan Petersen, Linda Scott Campbell, Richard Lumsden, and published by A.D.R. Comics.

 

Led by a plain-clothed no-nonsense powerhouse called Pulsar, there's a guy with a Captain Cold riff called Polar Knight, "French Guardian" from Quebec (which hasn't been part of France since the Royal Proclamation of 1763, but sure), a soldier with Rictor's powers called Seism, a cookie-cutter muscle called Moose (sadly, nobody makes any Christine McGlade jokes about him), a psychometric codenamed Recap and a kind of generic flying "blasts from her hands" a durable woman called Damsel.

What's most interesting about this group is their interplay with each other. There's a legitimate (and pretty well developed, for the small amount of panel time) super-villain here (with a surprise in what they have going on) rated an "Impact Level 3." Still, even the people here don't consider that much of a threat, sending only Pulsar to fight him. Seism has enormous power but the possibility for massive amounts of property damage, frustrated by rear-echelon assignments but challenging to deploy in urban combat.

Alan Russette gives the developments here a kind of Hill Street Blues feel, with no single character dominating this ensemble piece and most of them (save the monotonous Moose, so far a complete stereotype) getting a moment in the sun, with clever and even-handed exposition. There's even an undercurrent of something sinister at the root of things, unseen by our blue-collar heroes. The visuals from Petersen, Campbell, and Lumsden are solid and do pretty good action scenes (look for the aforementioned big surprise). Campbell's colors could be a little more defined, but they get the job done. Overall, this is an enjoyable, effective superhero romp that hints at the idea it could be hiding bigger, better secrets. RATING: HONORABLE MENTION.

Project: I.M.P.A.C.T. #2
Seism hits the training field to work on his control. Meanwhile, Pulsar investigates a break-in at the Royal Ontario Museum!

About Hannibal Tabu

Hannibal Tabu is a writer, journalist, DJ, poet and designer living in south Los Angeles with his wife and children. He's a winner of the 2012 Top Cow Talent Hunt, winner of the 2018-2019 Cultural Trailblazer award from the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, his weekly comic book review column THE BUY PILE can be found on iHeartRadio's Nerd-O-Rama podcast, his reviews can be found on BleedingCool.com, and more information can be found at his website, www.hannibaltabu.com.
Plus, get free weekly web comics on the Operative Network at http://bit.ly/combatshaman.

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