Evil Geek Book Report – Mega Man 1: Let The Games Begin
Ah…Mega Man, who doesn’t love the blue bomber? One of the pillars of both Nintendo and Capcom. He’s one of the few characters that old school gamers have fond memories of but was also able to make his way into the modern age. I was shocked when I found out Mega Man had a comic book and even more shocked that Archie company put it out. I’ll confess, I have never read an Archie comic book or anything released by their company in my entire life. As soon as I saw what it looked like, I had to get it.
What should a Mega Man comic look like? I’m not sure how to explain it, but it looks exactly how a Mega Man comic should look. It’s video game graphics, combined with the Mega Man cartoon from the 90’s and a little manga tossed in for good measure. Generally, I’m not a fan of comics whose art work is on the cartoonish side but for this it fits the tone of the book perfectly. It’s a light, fun all ages comic where the dialogue is kept to a minimum and the art is pushed out front. Many of the pages end up being huge panels by artist Patrick Spaziante. The book’s writing duties are helmed by (Sonic The Hedgehog comic alum) Ian Flynn and debuted in 2011.
Our Evil Geek Book Report is going to focus on the TPB for Book 1: Let The Games Begin. It covers the first four issues and the inaugural story arc. What they were smart to do was adapt the actual story lines from the Nintendo games. It seems like every 4 issues is its own arc, alternating between plots to the main series of games as well as their own story lines made just for the comics that include elements of some of the other games outside of the main series. This is great because Nintendo games (outside of RPGs) aren’t known for their in depth story lines so it’s nice to see them fleshed out a bit and expanded on.
If you’re not familiar with Mega Man (shame on you!) I’ll provide a brief overview of the first story arc (and first Nintendo game). Sometime in our not too distant future Doctor Light and Doctor Wiley have made massive strides in the field of artificial intelligence robotics. Light has two humanized robots in particular that were created as helpers that he’s since adopted as his children. A male named Rock and a female named Roll (get it?). At an unveiling ceremony we find out that Light and Wiley have created 6 Robot Masters all with specific skills designed to assist society in a variety of different ways. Cuts Man whose head houses a gigantic pair of detachable scissors has been designated for forestry work and Fire Man who can control fire (obviously) will be working with waste management and etc. You get the idea.
The next day, it turns out Dr. Wiley had counter programmed all the Robot Masters to follow his whimsy. He has them decimate and terrorize the city and begins making governmental demands. After finding this out a very terrified and humiliated Dr. Light begins grieving and in a moment of supreme empathy Rock agrees to sacrifice himself to stop them. Dr. Light makes some specifications to Rock’s body including a Mega-Buster arm cannon to replace his arm and allow him to shoot things out of it. As well as the all important copy chip that lets him learn and access the weapon of any Robot Master he defeats. This was always a big draw for the game too. It was unique and made you strategize what Robot Master would be susceptible to another Robot Master’s powers. After the transformation, Rock dubs himself Mega Man and reluctantly begins confronting the Robot Masters until they lead him to Dr. Wiley.
This is a fun all ages book that doesn’t take itself very seriously. It’s highly recommended to any fans of the video game series or anyone looking for a breezy uncomplicated comic that’s heavy on bright visuals. It’s a lot of fun and sometimes that’s all you need.
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