By Nolan P. Smith
(Victorville)– Last year, AfterShock Comics brought the world a very unusual superteam, with the likes of Teddy Roosevelt, Annie Oakley, Harry Houdini, Jack Johnson, and Thomas Edison. Rough Riders was a fun, historical romp with a Steampunk flare, and left readers wanting more. Well, more we shall get now that the band is back together with Rough Riders: Riders on a Storm.
The creative team from the first series is back as well, as creator/writer Adam Glass (Supernatural, Suicide Squad), artist Pat Oliffe (Untold Tales of Spider-Man), colorist Gabe Eltaeb, and letterer Sal Cipriano bring the next phase is AfterShock’s own band of superheroes. Three years have passed since the last adventure, but when President William McKinley is shot, Vice President Theodore Roosevelt goes back into fight mode to defend his country and President. This means sending out the call to gather his warriors in arms from their very different lives now. Houdini is a massive success, Johnson’s notoriety has grown, and Annie Oakley…wait, Oakley died at the end of the last issue, what’s going on here?
This issue is a great bridge from volume 1 to 2, which allows for some of our heroes to reconnect from time passed as well. Glass continues to build on this semi historical, semi science fiction world, incorporating more outrageous elements (like Teddy’s train) to the mix. Oliffe’s artwork, combined with the excellent coloring of Eltaeb, makes for a visually appealing debut issue to this new arc. There isn’t a lot of action here, but that’s ok. This issue lays the foundation to what is bound to be another action packed, over the top adventure with winks and nods to our American history. If you haven’t checked out Rough Riders yet, this is a fantastic time to do so. Even better, get this new #1 and the trade paperback of Vol 1, and you are all set.
Nolan Smith is a longtime reporter with High Desert Daily, covering everything from the opening of a new comic book shop to a series on the effects of Alzheimer’s Disease. A long time resident of the Victor Valley, Smith has worked in the educational sector in the High Desert for the past decade. He is also the Editor and Co-Founder of Pastrami Nation- a pop culture news site which features news, reviews and podcasts on various aspects of pop culture, including comic books, video games, films, anime, manga, cosplay and more. You can visit Pastrami Nation at www.pastramination.com.