In Review: Patience! Conviction! Revenge! #4

Silly, intense, cool, crazy, awesome fun. Recommended.

The cover: This is not a situation that Renny is happy to be in. He’s pouring coffee for a female shaped robot while the ‘bot gives his cheek a pinch. Surrounding the circular linen covered table are several individuals with rifles and pistols all pointed at the accommodating human. The look on the protagonist’s face is great; even if one knows nothing about this series it’s easy to tell that he’s not a happy camper. Very funny and very cool. I like the artwork and the colors are also nicely done with the two at the table colored in light bright colors to draw the reader’s eyes, while everyone around them are in darker colors, increasing their sinister nature and making them seem like a faceless mob. I like this piece by Marco Ferrari and Patrizia Comino. Overall grade: A

The story: Things are on fire. Debris is in the street, and so is Renny’s body. Marisol and Robot Paul can’t be seen, but their dialogue is heard as they look upon the man responsible for Operation Patience! Conviction! Revenge! The two are arguing what to do with him. If he’s left in the street, he’ll die. Marisol considers if that’s not really such a bad thing. Suddenly Renny sits up. “Welp,” Marisol says. “He’s alive.” A turn of the page and the destruction that Renny’s caused can be seen and it’s epic. He’s helped up by two bots and he tries to talk, but slurs his words. Marisol is on the phone with Robot Paul, who says to put him on the mount and take him back to the safe house so they can regroup. Renny wants to continue the mission saying, “No. Westrikenow! Thewatertreatmentplant! They’llneverexpectit!” He’s placed on the flying motorcycle and is about to take off, but Marisol asks, “Shouldn’t we do something for these people whose houses are burning down?” Spotting a little girl wandering around in the chaos, he goes to her, says something wholly inappropriate, and flies off. Left behind, Marisol says, “Not at all what I meant.” This scene completely sums up Renny for newcomers in the penultimate issue of this series. Writer Patrick Kindlon then moves his tale to Robot Paul who’s dealing cards in Whitely Quinn’s casino and one of the players is not having things go his way. It’s a funny scene and it’s sad if one thinks too long about things. That’s one of the joys of this book: it’s wrong on so many levels, but it’s just so funny. Robot Paul is put into a new field at the casino, where he spies one of Renny’s targets. Unfortunately, Renny, his robot gang, and Marisol encounter some new foes, led by a terrific new character who believes she’s capable of a specific act. The dialogue between Renny and this character is funny, with the reveal on Page 16 hilarious. Once again, one of the bots gets Renny out of trouble and that’s also incredibly humorous and equally awesome. Just when things can’t get worse, the final page again puts Renny in a terrible cliffhanger. Any story that can reference O. Henry and Lord of the Flies while having robots dropping bodies gets my automatic seal of approval. Overall grade: A

The art: Marco Ferrari has made me a fan of his artwork with this series. He creates outstanding robots. I love me some robots and the greater the variety the better. His bots are the most entertaining I’ve seen in a book since I discovered Ian Gibson’s work in the 1980’s. Robot Paul is simply awesome, especially now that he’s covered in promotional stickers. If an Adorabot isn’t made into a doll by AfterShock it would be a crime. Renny is also great looking. He’s definitely becoming increasingly damaged as the series progresses, but after the mess he got himself into at the end of last issue he’s looking lucky to be alive. I love his cocky posture throughout the book, whether under attack or sitting and talking with the new character. Marisol is perpetually perturbed and that makes her a killer character every time she appears; I find so much joy and humor looking at the disgust on her face, such as on Page 4. The first page teases the destruction that Renny has wrought on the locals, but doesn’t show any of it clearly, with Ferrari rightly making his panels close-up on the character. Pages 2 and 3 are a double-paged splash and it’s looking down upon the devastation and it’s a fright. Reading the dialogue on the pages makes the flaming, destroyed setting really funny. Like Kindlon, Ferrari can make something that’s pretty horrific, really funny visually. This would definitely be what’s to be had on Page 4, which is the perfect match of art to script in the book. The action in this book is very fluid, starting on Page 9 and as the sequence continues Ferrari creates panels that cross 10 and 11, as well as 12 and 13. This extends the action, going across the pages, making the visuals larger and stronger. I laughed out loud at what Adorabot does and the second to last panel on 13. The entrance of the new foe on 14 is unexpected, given what’s just occurred, and it’s perfect. The full-paged splash on 16 is another hilarious illustration that really shouldn’t be funny, but it truly is. The final page is a splash, introducing what looks to be last threat for Renny and it’s massive and cool. Seriously, Ferrari’s art is so much fun. Overall grade: A

The colors: I’m also a fan of the colors by Patrizia Comino. Oranges dominate the opening of the book, teasing the flames that are still going after the previous issue’s action. The next two pages also use orange, for the flames, but there’s also some terrific work with grays, tans, and browns to increase the destruction in the artwork. When the story goes within the casino it has the tacky greens of card tables and the rusty reds of tacky walls. Oranges return to tell the reader that a new setting isn’t the nicest place to be. The reds on 16 increase the humor of the situation. Pages 18 – 22 are punctuated by select crimsons for readers to focus on. There’s also some cool blues to have some background characters pop and these colors become really cool in the penultimate panel on Page 21. The greens and violets on the final page are incredibly vibrant, unlike anything seen in this issue and they deserve them. Overall grade: A

The letters: Dialogue, robot speech, Renny’s slurring, sounds, and the three word tease for next issue are by Jim Campbell. I love the design of the robots’ speech which looks like old school computerized letters, making their every word sound mechanical. Renny’s slurs are visual fun because the words are italicized and there’s no spacing between them, forcing the reader to discern what he’s saying, just as Marisol is. The sounds are spectacular looking, with BDOOM, BUDDA BUDDA, POK, BLAMM, BUK, BUK, BUK, TINK, and TING making the action sound excellent. I’m liking Campbell’s work. Overall grade: A 

The final line: Silly, intense, cool, crazy, awesome fun. A blast to read in every possible way. Recommended. Overall grade: A

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Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer's Guide for several years with "It's Bound to Happen!" and he's reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He's taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.
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