Micronauts #1 (1978)

Best. Toy comic book. Ever.
So I picked up this comic book when on vacation in Victoria this weekend (had a wonderful time, thanks for asking, though it was a pain taking three extra ferries to get over there) and read the comic for the first time probably since I bought it back in the day. And the damn thing is wonderful. It’s exciting, it has stunning artwork, the story moves like a rocket – the whole thing is so intriguing and interesting that it’s easy to see why everyone loved this comic when it came out.
Much of the credit has to go to artist Mike Golden. Golden’s been pretty much invisible in the industry over the last few years (I know he drew some Jackie Chan comics several years ago, but I have no idea what he’s done in the last while), but he did some fantastic work during the Carter Administration. Golden, at least when paired with inker Josef Rubenstein, looks a bit like a more dynamic version of Bernie Wrightson, all full of emotion and action and a certain very particular feeling of strangeness that makes every scene look uniquely special. His depiction of the bizarre Time Traveller, slightly out of focus with the world around him, is spectacular, especially in light of the extremely limited production values of the time. And his depiction of the evil Baron Karza is stunning: when we first see Baron Karza, he’s wearing a centaur’s outfit, which makes the bad guy look very strange. Later, when he’s got legs, it has the subtle effect of making readers wonder just what in the world the character is capable of.
It’s generally agreed that Micronauts is writer Bill Mantlo’s best work, and his writing really shines in this first issue. He does a terrific job of creating the settings of this comic without explaining too much, creating a setting that promises much more to come in the future. The writing is a bit florid, but it completely fits the grand action-adventure style of the comic.
I really don’t remember how this series went after the team came to Earth, but now I really want to know. This was a terrific comic book.

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