Review: Manhattan Projects #6

by

“STAR CITY”
While the Americans have progressively built the Manhattan Projects into massive success and thrust the west into future dominance, on the other side of the world the cold war rages on. Find out the secret history of the Russian science machine.
The thrilling FEEL GOOD, BAD SCIENCE series continues in THE MANHATTAN PROJECTS #6: STAR CITY!

We’re back again for another look at Jonathan Hickman and Nick Pitarra’s Manhattan Projects. We’re six issues in to this really odd, but really great series. We are diving even deeper into the stories of Oppenheimer, Einstein, and the whole crew as the series progresses. This issue takes a slightly different approach and gives us our first real look at the other side of the post WWII coin- the Russians.

The space race continues in #6, and we get to see who the Russians got to help with the goal. The Americans got Wernher Von Braun, which we saw in a previous issue. This story runs parallel to that one in many respects and shows how the Russians picked up Helmutt Grottrup. The new characters introduced are the opposite side of what we’ve seen in the story so far. The Russians have a magnificent set up in Star City, and they treat their scientists quiet differently than the Americans and General Leslie Groves does. This story is set up expertly. It uses the past and the present to show similarities and differences of how Grottrup is treated by the Nazis and Russians. It is a great piece of parallel storytelling that adds layers to the story that really strengthen this issue. It is handled wonderfully by Pitarra’s art.

We get to see more of Wernher Von Braun’s true colors. We knew he wasn’t such a great guy due to how he became the last scientist standing in the destroyed Nazi castle, but his ineteractions with Grottrup show that he is smack-dab in the middle of the shady character circle with Einstein and Oppenheimer.

Bottom Line: This story does some backtracking, but it still progresses the story and seems to set things up quite nicely for the next two-part storyline coming as teased in the trades. Each issue has been strong and can stand on its own, but this one stands on its own while still setting pieces into place for future stories. Manhattan Projects continues to be trippy and thrilling. Hickman and Pitara continue to please. I give Manhattan Projects #6 a 5/5.

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