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‘American Legends #1:’ Comic Book Review

Paul Revere, John Henry, Casey Jones (not the one from TMNT), Al Gore.  Huge figures of the American tapestry whose lives became shadowed by the legends they became.  There are stories that folks would tell each other before the advent of TV, YouTube, and smartphones took away the need of entertaining each other with stories in parlors and at the bar.

Using these kinds of figures, specifically Davy Crockett, Mike Fink, Sally Thunder, and the Lefittes, the Schwartzes weave a tale of pre-expansion New Orleans, the last vestige of civilization before the wildness of the territory beyond.  Utilizing the political and mystical wiles of that southern bastion, they cast these larger-than-life characters into situations that only they could get out of.

The artwork in this book is quite stunning, and the backgrounds are portrait worthy, bringing the virginal territory to life in a crisp and inspiring way.  The characters are alternately a part of this realistic styling and pop above it at times, echoing the legendary, larger-than-life status they’ve earned. 

The story is a good start to a slightly paranormal mystery with a solid foundation in the world at its time, but there are times when there’s a bit of a jarring switch between locales or storylines, and it can take a minute and flipping back a page to see if you hadn’t missed something.  I don’t know if these moments are intentional or not, but, personally, it took me out of the story too often.

It’s a solid start to what could be a very interesting series. I’m willing to give it a shot and see if the bumps in the road smooth out in the next few issues.