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REVIEW: Junkyard Joe #1


REVIEW: Junkyard Joe #1

3.70/5.0 Stars
Rating if the Book Were a Movie: R

Creative Team:

Writer: Geoff Johns
Artist: Gary Frank
Colors: Brad Anderson
Letters: Rob Leigh
Cover: Gary Frank and Brad Anderson
Editor: Brian Cunningham
Publisher: Image Comics/Mad Ghost 


Story: 3.6 Stars
Artwork: 3.8 Stars
Cover Artwork: 3.9 Stars
Dialogue: 3.6 Stars
Mechanics: 3.6 Stars
Editing: 3.7 Stars

About the Book:

The story of Junkyard Joe starts by taking us to Vietnam in 1972. A company of American soldiers, the Junkyard Dogs, is the focal point of this issue. The Junkyard Dogs lost a man on one of their more recent patrols. He was replaced by a new recruit that came with orders straight from Washington, D.C.. When the company is ambushed by North Vietnamese soldiers things get very interesting. The Junkyard Dogs have come to learn that their new recruit is an android. How do they feel about fighting alongside a machine, even if that machine just saved their lives?

Reader’s Notes:

Junkyard Joe first caught my attention when it was on the shelves at my local comic book shop last fall. I snagged a copy and added it to my reading queue, figuring sometime in the next month or so I’d get to it. Unfortunately that’s about the time that the hours at my 9-5 started to really pick up. With a steady wave of new books coming in, Junkyard Joe #1 gradually slipped down the list.

As I’ve said before, I am a big fan of historical  fiction and science fiction. Junkyard Joe checks both boxes. We get a taste of what it was like to serve in Vietnam while also getting a glimpse of android soldiers being used in combat. This isn’t the first time that has been done. We had the Battle Android Troopers (B.A.T.s) in G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero in the 1980’s.

Joe is a big upgrade from what we saw in A Real American Hero. For starters, Joe demonstrates the ability to have cognitive thoughts. He realized a grenade would explode and wipe out a platoon. He did something about it. A B.A.T. would have kept walking. Over time we saw Joe develop relationships with the rest of the platoon. That would never happen with Cobra’s androids.

This cover is very striking. Between the way Joe is depicted and the detailed backdrop it gives one no choice but to take notice of it. It captures the imagination. It creates intrigue. These are things you desperately want from the cover when it is the first issue in a new series.

I was very fond of the artwork on the interior pages. The work is very detailed. Lines are crisp. The coloring brings the characters to life. Combined,they pull us into the jungles of Vietnam to the point that the reader can practically feel the humidity.

As a geek on a budget I believe Junkyard Joe is well worth the price of admission. We get a great foundation for a plot that has unlimited potential to go with some terrific artwork and an opportunity to ask yourself, “What if….?”.

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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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