Thursday, October 19, 2023

Comics Review: "BIG GAME #4" Goes Back to the Future

BIG GAME #4 (OF 5)

STORY: Mark Millar
ART: Pepe Larraz
COLORS: Giovanna Niro
LETTERS: Clem Robins
EDITOR: Sarah Unwin
COVER: Pepe Larraz with Giovanna Niro
VARIANT COVER ARTISTS: Matteo Scalera; Pepe Larraz
28pp, Color, $4.99 U.S. (October 2023)

Rated M / Mature

Big Game is a new five-issue comic book event miniseries from writer Mark Millar and artist Pepe Larraz.  Big Game is a crossover event series that pulls together all the franchises that are part of Millar's company/imprint, “Millarworld.”  That includes Kick-Ass, Kingsman, Nemesis, and The Magic Order, to name a few.  Colorist Giovanna Niro and letterer Clem Robins complete the series' creative team.

Big Game is a sequel to the first Millarworld comic book miniseries, Wanted (2003-04).  The stars of that series, The Fraternity, the super-villains that secretly rule the world, defeated their superhero adversaries in 1986.  Now, this entity is concerned about the reemergence of superheroes, so it unleashes it new superhero killer, Nemesis (from Nemesis: Reloaded), on a hero-assassination spree.

Big Game #4 opens in the world of the series, Empress (before the events of that series).  Hit-Girl (Mindy McCready) has ridden a dead Chrononaut far, far into Earth's deep history.  Now, she's face to face with Princess Aine, the daughter of King Morax.  The King himself has conquered space, so he is shocked to realize that millions of years in the future – from where Hit-Girl hails – his Empire does not exist and no one remembers it.  Now, he believes that time travel can change this unpleasant future reality, but where does that leave Mindy?

Meanwhile, a gathering of superheroes is unaware that they are sitting ducks for Nemesis.  So where are The Magic Order and Kick-Ass?

THE LOWDOWN:  I have been receiving PDF review copies of Netflix/Millarworld's comic book titles since late 2021.  Big Game #4 is the latest.

Big Game #4 is an excellent Empress comic book, especially considering that the long-awaited second series is still long-awaited.  Still, I like the manner in which writer Mark Millar is fitting all his series together; Big Game makes Millarworld really feel like an actual comic book world.

All along, series artist Pepe Larraz has unleashed his beautiful and brutal graphical storytelling.  Big Game #4 allows him to offer a different tone.  Yes, there is still the slaughter, but Larraz's ability to depict multiple worlds and settings gets to impress here.  Giovanna Niro makes it all pop with her rich colors, giving the narrative an epic scope.

Big Game #1 had me curious to see what was next.  Big Game #2 blew the doorway to my imagination off its hinges.  Big Game #3 felt like the story wasn't finished pounding me.  Big Game #4 promises to be a blast.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of Mark Millar and especially of his Millarworld titles will want to read Big Game.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

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