New S.T.A.R. Labs intern Reister (neighbor to one Clark Kent) has a rather normal existence ( I guess) for a twenty-something based in Metropolis; an odd aunt and a yappy evil tiny dog that he helps take care of and urgent roommate problems. Reister and his roommate conduct new roommate inquiries. One applicant, Clarice is deemed a good choice by Reister but is shot down by his roommate. He runs after her to tell her so and says they hope to meet again
However, things go awry (and fall into a pretty much Golden/Silver age style origin story) when he’s assigned the graveyard shift at S.T.A.R., tasked with decontaminating and cleaning the quarantine unit. While cleaning he decides to take off his mask (dummy) and finishes his work. He bumps into Clarice outside who invites him to her new place. Turns out she’s squatting in newly built condos. She starts to take a shower while they chat and while he relaxes, Reister ends up literally melting through the bed and floor, all the way down underground, where we find him in the opening, having transformed into a literal brick-red elemental.
Hey this is Lobdell? Guess so. This is actually pretty good? I’m shocked. I feel bad for a lot these sort of unique non-established character books that try to get established. It’s very rare to get new characters that stick (Silk, Spider-Gwen over at Marvel are some great examples though Gwen really isn’t new). We had a Doomed miniseries last year, this year it’s back with a twist and poor Reister is that twist.
Reister is certainly unique, he seems like a good kid, he’s a poc first and foremost which is great (don’t know if the trend of poc constantly having powers that change their appearance a la Skitter is something I support though) and his interactions with his aunt and dog are cute. It’s actually pretty charming which speaks loads regarding Lobdell’s writing, which I usually dislike quite a lot.
There’s not really much here that’s bad actually, the art is decent enough, it’s not great but not terrible either. The coloring is good enough as well. It’s solid. Just not terribly distinctive.
I hope this gets a chance to actually survive as a series. I doubt it will sell well, so people check this out and support it, it seems promising enough and is a lot more charming and endearing than the scary red dude may suggest. It’s nothing new, but could lead to some fun things. Check out Clark’s cameo as well. Give it a shot it looks fun!