Comic Book Review: Predator: Life and Death #1
Predator: Life and Death begins chapter one in a new story cycle involving Predators, Aliens, and the mysterious Engineers from Prometheus. Spinning out of Fire and Stone, so if you read that mini series you know what is in store for you. Most who did were in for one heck of an experience close to the movies. Luckily here if you haven’t, there doesn’t seem to be the pressure to know any events leading up to this story.
All you need to know is that a mysterious horseshoe-shaped spaceship of unknown origin, most likely the one seen from Fire and Stone, and now Colonial Marines on the planet Tartarus battle extraterrestrial hunters over the possession of it. This first issue is a slow burn to say the least. Being a Predator story you of course find yourself familiar with the formula as it is usually a build up to all hell breaking loose. There is a solid amount of time put into introducing our main characters Mr. Lorimer and Captain Paget. It was definitely smart to establish off the bat what these two’s motivations were. One wanting the ship, and the other wanting to protect her crew. At this point you do hope that these two characters are the only two we really need to know considering the inevitable slaughter we all know is coming given what this is.
From there it becomes to pick up the direction this story will take. Mainly when it comes to seeing the kind of crew Captain Paget is taking with her to recover this ship. Exactly the kind of characters you know will either screw things up for themselves or be enough to put up a fight against whatever is coming for that ship as well. Them initially looking like they can put up a fight is good to have in mind compared to those who were unfortunate in the past.
The suspense leading up to the attack by the band of Predators was good for what it is. We know what’s coming, though the marines had no idea what was waiting for them. There was that fear spreading through the atmosphere which came from what they didn’t know. In this situation you at least appreciate that they aren’t just a bunch of scientists. It all came down to execution and while not as intense as you thought the first encounter might be, these are still Predators who think before acting. It’s a game and hunt for them.
The art style for Predator: Life and Death is interesting because it’s not too simple, though not too detailed. Just enough to paint a picture so to speak of this world. It is more of the characters who through certain perspectives are drawn simple. Though what stands out most here is the way the environments are captured. Going from normal forest-like scenery to structures which are foreign. It is usually those structures which catch your attention most because that is where the most creativity goes into this next to whatever hell breaks loose when guns start firing. The color choice is fairly natural given the fact that most of this story would be taking place in greenery. Not too strong or overpowering, just what is needed to bring out the shifting tones. Especially when the warmer colors are applied to show escalation.
Predator: Life and Death #1 was a good start to this new mini series. It is new reader friendly, stays true to what fans like about the Predator series, and straightforward with what you will get out of this story between the characters and plot.