INDIE BLACK COMIC-BOOKS

THE ESSENTIAL HOTSHOT #1


Michael is the superhero called Hotshot and he has just been dumped. While trying to forget about his personal life;downtown Columbus comes under attack from an unknown monstrosity. Wait who is that caught in the middle, yup that would be thee ex girlfriend. Can Mike/Hotshot save the city, his ex and himself? In the wake of the cataclysmic Zero Event, a young hero has risen in the superhero community. Inspired by the late Justice. He has devoted his life to helping others while trying to juggle his hectic life as a college art student.

Artist/Creator Michael Watson teams up with writer Victor Dandridge to give us #1 of this series, from Freestyle Komics. This story opens with Michael walking along the street, reminiscing about being dumped by his girlfriend Carla, she says it’s because she can’t trust him due to his keeping secrets about his whereabouts too often. That would be because of his adventures as Hotshot, but he can’t tell her that. He’s still pretty broken up about it, when a woman has her purse snatched. So Michael quickly changes into his costume and, as Hotshot, subdues the thief and returns the purse. Out of nowhere, a supervillain called Void attacks Hotshot, spouting lines about how he’s been searching for Hotshot because it’s his destiny to destroy him.

There is some great potential in this story, I like the art, it has a cartoonish style that fits the tone. And there is some good writing in here. The scene where Michael and Carla are arguing as she’s dumping him felt very real. As Hotshot, he also has a penchant for wise-cracking, in a way that reminds me of classic Spider-Man or Static. But some of the flaws are that we don’t get any background about Hotshot, as in his origin, and it’s not even clear exactly what all of his powers are. He can fly, and appears to be super strong, and somewhat invulnerable. Likewise, Void’s abilities are unclear, while also appearing invulnerable and super-strong, plus he can levitate himself and other objects. During the fight with Hotshot, Void makes a bunch of cars and trucks fly up into the air, and Hotshot as to catch them all and safely land them back on the ground. One of those cars contains Carla, who gets trapped in it, and Hotshot almost drops the car when he recognizes her, as he’s caught off guard. There’s a hint that Hotshot knows Void from somewhere, but he’s unclear of that. There’s also a brief subplot where several bystanders of the fight begin foaming at the mouth, and acting possessed, and start attacking Hotshot while shouting “make way for the darkness” and “extinguish the light”, which isn’t followed up on. And another costumed superhero, a Black female called Vigilance, flies onto the scene to aid Hotshot, and trades blows with Void, but then seems to disappear after 2 pages. The story ends with a cliffhanger of Void making several more cars, and a bus and a truck, float in the air.

The story, titled “Hero’s Welcome”, is listed as part 1 of 5. So I hope that part 2 will fill in some more of the blanks. I’m intrigued enough to give this series another shot, so I will order issue #2, and then see if that justifies finishing the series.

3 STARS

Available from INDYPLANET.

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