"Freeway Fighter #4" Comic Review
Written by James Ferguson
Published by Titan Comics
Written by Andi Ewington
Illustrated by Simon Coleby
Colored by Len O'Grady
2017, 32 Pages, $3.99
Comic released on August 9th, 2017
On the run from a gang called the Doom Dogs, Bella de la Rosa and her new traveling companion stop to scrounge for some spare parts. Instead of valuable machinery, she gets a snake bite. Now it's a race against time to New Hope where Bella can get some medical treatment. Unfortunately, the scavengers have caught up to them. They want her car and they're willing to kill her in the process. Which will take her life first? The snake bite or this gang?
It's easy to compare Freeway Fighter to Mad Max. There are a lot of similarities and they have the same basic look and feel. The cars in this comic are built of muscle, blood, and steel. This is a dystopian world where the fastest and the strongest rule.
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There is an incredible chase scene that is brilliantly illustrated by Simon Coleby. You can feel the excitement with every turn. This is some Fast and the Furious level action. There's one double-page spread that really stands out with Bella's car in the foreground, kicking up dust as it rockets towards the reader. The Doom Dogs are in the distance, gaining on them. Bullets are flying by, whizzing just past the car and nicking it here and there.
Colorist Len O'Grady gives the cars a faded, worn-in look. You can practically feel the grime that's seeped into the metal. The sun beats down on this desert plain, offering no shelter from its brutal rays. It's matched only by the fire from explosions as Bella and her friend fight off their opposition.
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All of this sounds awesome and it is. The problem is that it doesn't come together in the story department. This is the final issue of Freeway Fighter and it ends just as it's really getting going. The final page says to continue the adventure in the gamebook, so I guess this four-issue mini-series was intended as a prequel to the role playing game? That's rather disappointing because writer Andi Ewington introduces some great concepts here that never get fully developed. The comic ends and leaves you hanging.
Freeway Fighter is a gorgeously illustrated post-apocalyptic comic. Unfortunately, it's all style and no substance. The story leaves much to be desired and doesn't come close to tying up any of the loose ends it creates over its four chapters. This was my first exposure to Freeway Fighter as I'm unfamiliar with the game. The comic should have stood on its own without the need for me to further define it on my own by setting up a campaign. Players may see it differently and use this as a great way to begin their games.