So what happens when you combine the tone of a Spider-man comic, with the mood of DC Comics, and the power to open up dimension breaching portals called rifts? Well, the answers easy! You get Sideways. And no! I’m not talking the romcom/dramedy starring Paul Giamatti. I’m talking the New Age of Heroes that DC has layed at our fingertips.
Sideways is. . .well look, if you don’t know him check the wiki. I’m not here to break him down and give you his stats. I’m here to talk about if his run so far is a flop or hot! We’re three issues in so far and I’ve gotta say he’s growing on me. Although I’m still not sure if he’s doing enough to stand apart from the pack like how The Terrifics are doing. So let's talk issue 3 with a little bit of 1 & 2!
A NEW AGE INDEED!
What Kenneth Rocafort and Dan DiDio get right with Sideways is that this is an inexperienced kid with too much power and he has no idea when he’s doing. All of the issues have been decent up until this point, however, #3 is where the fun really ramps it up. Sideways comes face to face with a new speedster who goes by the name Killspeed. She’s an interesting enough character that I feel has been given the setup to become Sideways’ biggest nemesis. Assuming she’s not just a one off that they put too much thought into.
This issues sees Derek a.k.a Sideways discover just what he can do and boy has Rocafort + DiDio left the door open for a world of possibilities there. Throwing rifts, using their edges as offense & defense, searching for people...it’s pretty dope. It definitely makes you want to know what's to come. Especially since at the end of issue 2 you find out that maybe the rifts don’t always close and bad shit can come from that. However, only time will tell.
HUMOROUS, BEAUTIFUL, AND DEDICATED?
So the dialogue in this is done by DiDio & Justin Jordan. . .and it is great. The comics have just enough serious with the right amount of funny. I mean this whole issue has Sideways fighting in a hospital gown and undies. Mask on of course. The cover alone is enough to make one chuckle. And while we’re talking covers, let's talk art. This book is drawn unlike any DC comic I’ve seen thus far. Panel setups are unique. Splash pages are phenomenal. Lines, inks, colors, backgrounds. No one thing takes the back seat to another, and more importantly it’s consistent. That speaks volumes to the dedication these guys have to this title and I can only hope as things move forward that that spark stays as fierce.
SO YOU JUST FIGHT CRIME NOW?
All that being said, the problems I have with Sideways and what Rocafort & DiDio get wrong is that we have to point of reference for this character. Why is he fighting? Why is he trying to help this “villain”? What’s his motivation? Because in the 3 issues that I binged, there was zero reason given leading up to this. In fact the first issue was all about him wanting to shoot video of his abilities to post on the internet. And I feel like I always have to place this disclosure in my reviews; so I know its a comic book, and I get it’s all made up. However, us geeks need those small details. Spider-Man fights because of Uncle Ben. Barry Allen because of his dad (more or less). Captain America for liberty and country. Etc. I pick these 3 as examples because they didn’t start off as power having heroes. Just as Sideways did not. However, they all had a story. Sideways doesn’t. He’s just fighting, essentially, because he thinks it’s the things to do...and maybe that’s enough?
Another thing that made me go “HUH?!” Was he goes from barely getting the hang of his powers to “oh I’m gonna open up 5 or 6 rifts at a time to search for and FIND the bad guy”. It just all seems a bit lazy. COOL! But lazy…
AN ARM AND A...WELL AN ARM.
The best and most unhinged part in this issue by far is the end when Sideways “escapes” the clutches of Killspeed through a rift and discovers he’s got a souvenir. That made both LOL and terrified at just how dangerous this character can be. This moment is seconded only by the bus explosion during the battle with Killspeed. That was the most epic scene in ANY book I’ve read this week.
ALL AND ALL…
This is a good read. My only concern is the character is too Peter Parker. This was the major feel before we got the character and its being confirmed issue to issue. Still a much more entertaining character than Damage, DiDio and Rocafort do little to make this character truly pop. So should you pick it up if you haven’t? Absolutely!!! This is a fun freaking read and at the end of the day. That’s what comics are all about!
However, we're curious to hear about what you think of Sideways and the New Age of Heroes all together. Let us know in the comments belows.