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REVIEW: Blowtorch: Bad Roads #1

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REVIEW: Blowtorch: Bad Roads #1

4.00/5.0 Stars
Rating if the Book Were a Movie:  R

Creative Team:

Creator: Alfred Paige
Scripts: Alfred De-Gru hy
Artist: Igor Kurilin
Letters: Saida Temofonte
Cover: J.C. Grande with Joko Triyono
Publisher: Page 1 Comics/Comicsburgh

Ratings:

Story: 3.6 Stars
Artwork: 4.1 Stars
Cover Artwork: 4.6 Stars
Dialogue: 4.0 Stars
Mechanics: 4.3 Stars
Editing: 4.4 Stars 

About the Book:

Richard is a former special forces soldier and ex mercenary. After attending his uncle’s funeral back east, he is making the long drive back to Colorado. When he stops for gas in Kentucky his car is stolen by a pair of meth dealing punks. This leads to a side trip of adventure that was not on Richard’s original itinerary.

Reader’s Notes:

The pandemic was an interesting time. What was supposed to be a couple of weeks turned into a year and a half of minimal in person contact. Some didn’t do so well with the isolation. Others flourished.

A lot of small press publishers and creators took advantage of the opportunity. Some had already gotten one or two titles out. Others were starting from scratch. Countless small press publishers getting their work out there for the world to see during this time.

Thus began what I believe is the renaissance of small press publications in comics. There are so many new titles and issues out there that I could read three a day for a year and not come close to catching up. As a result some books slip in the reading queue.

“Blowtorch: Bad Roads” #1 made its way onto my radar a while ago. I saw a post about it being available to order from a catalog for comic book stores across the land. Afterwards I asked my local shop to order a copy for me.

“Blowtorch: Bad Roads” is a fast paced book that is easy to fall into. It reads like an action thriller movie, just like it was intended to. Like in most action movies, we don’t get as much character development as we’d like. Aside from being good in a fight, we don’t know much about Richard. I’m sure we’ll get to know him better as the series moves along.

A big challenge for action plots is being able to stand out from their contemporaries. We’ve had similar stories to this one in the past. A former special forces soldier gets into it with the locals (be it police, gangs, or drug lords, etc.) in Smalltown, USA and all Hell breaks loose. I am curious to see how the creative team will separate this story from the crowd.

This cover was nominated for 2023’s cover of the year in the Indie Comix Dispatch superlatives. It deserved to be. The artwork is phenomenal. It reminds me of “Batman” #497, where Bane breaks Batman’s back. This piece is more powerful, though.

I liked the artwork on the interior pages. We get incredible detail in the line work. There’s something about sticking with black and white artwork instead of having it colored. It invokes the imagination. It’s timeless. I especially liked the panels when Richard was speaking with the gas station attendant.

As a geek on a budget I would say “Blowtorch: Bad Roads” is worth the price of admission. This book is an action lover’s dream. When you couple that with outstanding artwork it’s hard to go wrong with this title.

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I grew up loving all things geek. I started reading and collecting comics when I was 8. My personal collection has roughly 8,000 books in it. When I’m not doing something geek-related I love spending time with my amazing wife and kids, gaming, and working on cross stitch projects.

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