Review: The Hero, Book 1

The Hero, Book 1
The Hero, Book 1 by David Rubín
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Holy shit, what a blast!

Picked it up because the artwork is so good. Very alive, colorful, and when you’ve got a book with action like this, you need something that feels like it’s moving. This book totally fits the bill.

And it’s a really successful mash-up of an old story with some modern technology thrown in. Take the story of Heracles, add a Wonder Woman, toss in a couple motorcycles, and you’ve got something pretty sweet.

What I like about the mash-up is that it’s not something like a real figure from history hunting mummies or some shit. That’s never made sense to me. Here you’ve got this person, who’s already pretty interesting, and then you throw in this mummy shit for why? And what difference does it make that it’s, I don’t know, John Hancock doing it as opposed to just any jerkoff in a powdered wig?

Why is it more compelling if Ben Franklin is hunting werewolves than it would be for just some guy?

Why is it necessary to bring George Washington in to fight zombies? What does George Washington add to the story?

Why does it have to be Hitler versus Dracula?

Okay, scratch that last one. Hitler versus anything is interesting. Hellboy has confirmed this over and over. As has Bionic Commando. If your story ends with Hitler’s head in a jar, and if both the head and the jar explode in graphic fashion, then I don’t really need to know anything else.

In The Hero, the mash-up works because it’s subtle, and it’s not about changing the core of the story. It just adds some interesting visuals, and makes it feel a bit more mythical, a bit less real. Which serves the story rather than distracting from it.

Looking forward to book 2, if it’s ever translated, and to the possible confrontation between Hitler and Heracles.

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