Ravingnerd Reviews: Brainiac #1

It’s nice to finally get some clarification. Brainiac has been called everything from COMPUTO, to the Collector, but this issue clarifies that all these names are personifications of Brainiac, the proper name for the knowledge seeking alien/machine hybrid. Aside from that, we finally get to see more about the character of Brainiac who was instrumental in the first arc of Action Comics and appears to be making a bold return in the near future. Before I start discussing the issue itself, here is what I like.

1. Pascal Alixe is the hero of the issue, his art is both moving and narrative. The art alone could tell the story of Brainiac with reason.
2. We see Brainiac when he was Vril-Dox, back when he was a truly mad scientist.
3. We see the beginning of his fascination with Jor-El, and just why was so fascinated with him.
4. He’s definitely ruthless.

Rating before reading: 6
Rating after reading: 7

I definitely really enjoyed this issue, and while this is a bit of a rehash from The Writing Writers post (the next three will be as well), I felt it necessary to discuss why I liked the issue as much as I did. Brainiac is always this big, threatening, otherworldly force. With this issue we see that he was not always that way, that he was at one point a misunderstood scientist simply trying to save his species. Yes, he is too far gone now to be considered a redeemable or tragic villain, but we that’s not what we want him to be. As a reader we want some justification for why Brainiac does what he does. At first it was to save planets and people. Now it’s because he can, and wants too. The evolution from relative nice guy to the villain we see at the end of the issue is what makes this comic enthralling. We see a the human side of Brainiac, and take solace in knowing that he was once trying to do good. Tony Bedard and Pascal Alixe give the story of Brainiac emotion. While tragic, we can’t feel Brainiac’s transformation as tragic without experiencing sympathy for him at one point or another. He’s not redeemable, but he wasn’t born evil. He just lost himself in the midst of it all.

I really enjoyed the issue, much more so than I thought. Once again, I apologize for the rehash, but I just had to talk about these last four issues myself.

Until the next time,

Rn

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