Quincredible Vol. 1: Quest to Be the Best!

Just like with their other title, Accell, this series is also a reboot of one of Lion Forge Comics’ original superhero titles. Quincredible was first launched in 2013.

The series was written by David Gorden, and drawn by Gerardo Sandoval (issues #1 & #2), Eddie Nunez (#3 & #4), and Aurelio Mazzara (#5 & #6). Quinton West was a teenager who got hit in the head by a meteorite (from the same meteor shower that affect the original Accel) while he was mowing his lawn and soon discovered that he’d become invulnerable, and he decides to use his power to fight crime. So he’s like Luke Cage in that aspect, except he didn’t gain super strength to go along with it. And he was already a skinny kid, the promo tagline for the book describes him as a 100-pound weakling, which puts him at a disadvantage against bigger opponents. This limits his effectiveness, sure he can’t be physically harmed but

Like the other original Lion Forge Comics, this series was formatted specifically for tablets, as they were a digital-only publisher at the time, so the six issues that were published were mostly a series of large single panels. And the stories were pretty heavy on action, with not as much emphasis on characterization. In the first issue, Quinton fights a large supervillain called Big Brother. In the second issue, we meet Mr. C, an older White man who is Quinton’s next-door neighbor, who was there when Quinten gained his power. Mr. C has a mysterious background and takes it upon himself to train Quinton, putting him through a series of drills and teaching him the martial art of Aikido. The third and fourth issues are a two-part story, in which Quinton finds out that his classmate Derrick, a school bully who’s been picking on him since they were in elementary school together, also gained superpowers from a meteor. He’s now large and superstrong, calling himself Degenerate. Quinton has to face him, despite his innate fear of Derrick. And issue five and six are another two-parter, in which Quinton faces Terrain, a former world-famous male model who was transformed into a Swamp Thing-ish monster.

While the end of issue six advertises the next issue (in which Quinton was supposed to meet a new Lion Forge character called Gun Bunny) I don’t think any further issues were published. If so, I missed them. I have the original six on my kindle but they’re no longer available for sale anywhere, which I think is same. The World of Black Heroes blog has a profile of Quincredible as well as reviews of the first, second, and third issues.

Well, in November 2018, Lion Forge rebooted the series.

Now written by Rodney Barnes (who recently launched the excellent series Monarch) and drawn by Selina Espiritu, this collection contains the first five issues.

This series is set in New Orleans and makes an effort to directly tie in to the greater superhero universe that Lion Forge was…forging (pun intended) at the time. A meteor shower had hit the city a year earlier, causing a major catastrophe on par with Hurricane Katrina. Quinton West is a 15-year-old nerdy kid, with an aptitude for science and electronics, living with his mother and father. In the aftermath of the meteor shower, he discovered that he’d become somewhat invulnerable. His skin can’t be penetrated, but he can still be hurt.  At first, he’s just trying to continue his life as normal. There’s a girl at school named Brittany that he has a crush on, she’s a socially conscious girl who follows a local community activist named Dr. Davis, so Quinton tries to get involved in her activities just to get on her good side. There’s also a bully named Caine who routinely harasses him.

Quinton soon comes in contact with a woman called Glow, she’s one of several local superheroes who’ve popped up since the meteor shower (this is the inciting event of the Lion Forge universe, known as “Catalyst Prime”, similar to Milestone’s “Big Bang”) and she encourages him to use his gift to help people. So Quinton slowly starts trying to find a way to make a difference. First, he foils the robbery of a local community center. Then during an attempted liquor store robbery, he encounters another local superhero, a martial artist named Kobra. But just as Quinton is beginning his superhero career, he finds out that someone has been arming local criminals with advanced high-tech weapons, and is setting them against the superheroes. Things get worse when Dr. Davis also publicly speaks out against superheroes, claiming they’re no better than the police.

Things heat up when Quinton’s identity gets blown and criminals break into his house and hold his parents hostage. Glow helps him rescue them, making his parents aware of his power, and then she takes him to join up with a group of the other superheroes as they band together to solve the mystery of who is arming the local criminals and why.

It’s a big story, but easy enough to follow. Even the introduction of the other superheroes is handled well, with Quinton as the POV character so it’s like we’re learning about them at the same time he is. So you don’t have to have read a bunch of other Lion Forge comics first in order to understand what’s going on in this series. It’s got plenty of action but also some nice character moments. The relationship between Quinton and his parents in particular stands out for how it’s written. Even the eventual villain of this first arc is 3-dimensional, not just a stereotypical bad guy. The book also raises issues of classism and institutional racism in an intelligent way. And it looks good too.

Chacebook rating: FIVE STARS


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