Joe Casey: Writer
David Messina: Pencils, Inks, & Color Supervision
Giovanna Niro: Colorist
Rus Wooton: Letterer
Sonia Harris: Graphic Designer & Story Consultant
Joey Braccino: Review
The latest superhero comic from Image opens with a full-page panel showcasing our eponymous hero in his civvies lighting up an oversized bong. A veritable jenga-tower of empty pizza boxes peters precariously in the corner of Jasper Jenkins’ New York apartment, and the TV news prattles on about the abduction of police chief Kantor. As Jasper’s roommate partakes in the vaporistic conviviality, Jasper himself vanishes from the apartment just as the news reaches a particularly grim level of needs-a-hero-NOW!
What follows this opening is one heck of a debut issue for Joe Casey’s newest superhero. In Bounce #1, Casey combines the novelty of slacker-heroism with the tried-and-true superheroes-in-an-ordinary-world story. Jasper, as Bounce, takes on supervillain Crunch in an action-packed, gruesome second sequence. During the brawl, Crunch remarks, in true “The World is Filling Up” fashion, that the world has changed and if villains need heroes, then supervillains need superheroes. Meanwhile, the District Attorney’s office is also concerned with the advent of supervigilantism and has taken on the challenges of these “Freaks” as “priority one.”
Casey also weaves in some high concept sci-fi and some more heavy tripping, almost to the point of overwhelming the composition of the opening issue. Yes, Casey presents multiple storylines and characters in this opening issue, but he does so at the sacrifice of truly introducing the reader to any one element. While this may entice readers to come back for more next issue, the sheer amount of information jammed into these 20 pages may deter others.
David Messina’s photo-realistic aesthetic is perfect for the extraordinary-in-the-ordinary setting of Casey’s narrative. Messina balances the grit and urban realism of New York with the fantasy of a bouncing superhero and an interdimensional portal. The final sequence in particular is fantastic; no spoilers here, but let’s just say that Messina illustrates the “trip” that Jasper finds himself on at issue’s end with an innovative blend of surrealism with Golden Age pointillism. It’s a stunning spin on Image’s naturalistic house style, and a perfect compliment to Casey’s story.
Worth a look. Never one to hold anything back (Have you read Sex), Casey has been relishing the opportunity to innovate and create with Image. The superhero story kicked off in Bounce #1 promises everything from urban realism to supertights to drug-induced hazes to slacker-(in)action. While this debut issue might try to do too much in too few pages, the premise and talent alone should play out positively as the issues roll on! Check it!