[Editor’s note: This review may contain spoilers.]
Writer: John Semper Jr.
Artist: Paul Pelletier
The story of Victor Stone, half man, half machine, all hero is told here! Thrown into battle with a vicious nanotechnology creature named Malware, Cyborg must use all of his resources and thinking to survive and defend S.T.A.R. Labs and his father! What secrets are Dr. Stone and S.T.A.R. Labs hiding and how is it tied to Cyborg?
Semper and Pelletier throw us right in the middle of a fight soon as we open the first page and I love it! Pelletier is a great artist and his attention to detail is amazing in every single fight scene. While battling the monster known as Malware, we see sweat and blood ooze from Victor’s face with great detail. It’s the small notices of detail that make a good comic a great comic and it’s obvious that these guys know that. This is essentially an origin story of sorts as we’re taken through key moments of Victor’s life by an unknown commentator, someone who’s been watching our hero for a long time and wants either Cyborg himself — or his technology! Either way it seems to not bode well for Victor who’s going toe to toe with the monster as they rip apart S.T.A.R. Labs! Semper does a great job of narrating the thinking and plans of our hero — who doesn’t rely just on his strength or his weaponry to survive. Semper shows us a Cyborg who’s at one with himself and every machine — including Malware as it turns out! Cyborg is shown here as a clear thinker and a tactician, and although it isn’t exactly Batman-level planning — he gets the job done anyway!
My only complaint about the book is the same as my praise about it — the origin story. Although it starts off interesting, toward the middle of the book I wanted more focus on the present and Victor’s current situation. This is only because I already knew the history of Cyborg though so if he’s an unknown to you then it’s completely alright to read his origin of course. The action comes back in toward the ending of the book and in the end you see the reasoning behind Semper’s origin storytelling to begin with. Someone is collecting technology — a whole lot of technology from different heroes and even villains for a purpose, and now they want Victor! Pelletier then shows us an entire roster of heroes and villains that this unknown foe plans to capture for his plans! Just to know that this involves more than just Cyborg pretty much guarantees that this story is far from over however.
The #1 issue for Cyborg is a great read if you love origin stories. Semper and Pelletier do a great job of showing not only Victor but also his father, Dr. Stone, in a completely different light than we might have already known. In previous histories, Victor lost his mother due to a car accident. However, here the writers have the cause of death being cancer instead. The moment Victor and Dr. Stone lose that light that was Victor’s mom and Dr. Stone’s wife, I immediately thought about the loss of my own aunt due to cancer — it was completely identifiable to me. Semper makes us feel the struggle of fighting to save someone we love everyday like Victor and Dr. Stone did but ultimately there is only so much you can do. I can’t wait to read the next issue of Cyborg and see exactly how Victor recovers from a realization that he’s made during the fight with Malware. Not to spoil too much for you, but it might make Victor look at his father slightly differently but I really hope not though. Read Cyborg Rebirth #1 and enjoy it for yourself! Part man, part machine — all hero!