Review: The Squidder #1
This all-new four-issue series finds an old soldier from a forgotten war in a post-apocalyptic world that has left him behind. He was one of the last of the legendary Squidder Legions. Can a discarded relic with a death wish and a rebellious Squid priestess overthrow humanity’s tentacled alien overlords? Ben Templesmith returns to his roots to finally do the tentacle/Cthulhu-orientated book he’s always promised! The Squidder mixes action, horror, science fiction, and fantasy elements with a touch of Squidly destruction.
A new action/horror/sci-fi series from IDW launches this week with the release of The Squidder #1 (of 4) from Ben Templesmith. Templesmith is credited as the creator, executive producer, writer, artist, letterer, and “whatever else he can think of” on the book with Kasra Ghanbari serving as the executive producer and art whisperer. Tyler Crane is the producer, logistics, and Redbull enthusiast with Menton3 on board as the spirit guide. Chris Ryall rounds things out as Sensei. Templesmith is finally back after a short break from comics, but how does The Squidder fare?
A long time ago giant squids took over the world after a long and bloody war. Today people accept the giant Squid as their overlord, with some even worshiping the Squid as a deity. One man lived through the events of the apocalyptic war some seventy years ago. This man is an old soldier who has been enhanced to serve in the legendary Squidder Legions. Now just living life by going through the motions and occasionally selling his unique set of skills to anyone who has a job that could offer a worthy death, the soldier is the last one fighting a long lost battle in a world that has moved on. When his death wish leads him to accept a job to track down a Squid priestess and bring her back alive, our anti-hero finds himself getting pulled into something much bigger than he could ever imagine. Will he be able to complete the job or will his death wish finally come true?
Templesmith does a good job of building an interesting post-apocalyptic wasteland in nearly 30 pages. We’re not spoon-fed information, but we can piece together enough to know what happened, who fought in the big war, and what has changed since it ended. Our soldier is a relic from a forgotten time, and he’s just looking to die. He’s haunted and troubled. That can quickly turn into a cliché, but Templesmith does a good job of keeping it fresh and moving along without getting bogged down. The big, bloody fight scenes don’t hurt either. Templesmith has a very unique style that makes a story like this a perfect opportunity to shine. This is a weird and nearly macabre world that has been through a lot. That’s shown through the often grotesque characters and darker and gritty waste world in which they operate. The Squidder is a big, imposing figure who towers over everyone else. He’s a strong man and Templesmith shows that fact off in incredible style.
Bottom Line: The Squidder gets off to an intriguing start, though there are some familiar parts. Templesmith is a good artist and storyteller, so it’s definitely worth returning to see just how far and how big things get. With the introduction out of the way it seems like we’re going straight to the good stuff. 3.5/5
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