POWER MAN AND IRON FIST #3
Written by: David Walker
Art by: Sanford Greene
Colors by: Lee Loughridge
Letters by: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Release Date: 04/20/16
As someone who is still getting their feet wet in the extended Marvel Universe, David Walker’s first three issues of Power Man and Iron Fist have been a blast thus far. Since first being introduced to Luke Cage in Season One of 2015’s Jessica Jones TV show, I longed to see Mike Colter’s onscreen adaptation sketched and inked in countless panels. While this series is a few tones brighter than Netflix’s portrayal, Walker and Co. have delivered another fantastic issue that has me eagerly awaiting the release of the follow-up.
After being conned into stealing the Super Soul Stone from Lonnie Lincoln, AKA Tombstone, by their former Office Manager Jennie Royce, Luke and Danny continue to seek more information about the stone from various mystic arts acquaintances and very special guests.
The relationship dynamics, specifically between Luke and his wife Jessica Jones, as well as his relationship with Danny Rand continue to be a major highlight for this book. Witnessing the way in which Luke has to submissively explain himself to his forward and in-charge wife is a joy. The counter to that married couple dynamic is the demeanor Luke takes when he interacts with Iron Fist, who is often obliviously in the clouds. It’s fun to experience the way Power Man has to balance his relationships.
While some fans are not too pleased with the more comedic and unaware Iron Fist that David Walker has portrayed thus far, I find it rather enjoyable and progressive to see a leading black male character that isn’t cheaply used as comedic relief. Instead, we are seeing Power Man portrayed with not simply just a sense-of-humor but as a level-headed, stand-up family man. All of this while Danny Rand, Luke’s white male counter-part, is being written with notes of humor and a lack of life experience.
The humor of this book while maintaining its dark aroma has been played brilliantly. With Jessica Jones’ mouth, Danny Rand’s youthful ambition, and Luke Cage’s old man-esque demeanor and mockery-like comebacks, Walker and Co. deliver numerous laughs and giggles.
Even with the good amount of humor, Power Man and Iron Fist’s grittiness is sustained well with the ferocious-looking Lonnie “Tombstone” Lincoln as well as the evolution of Jennie. As the powers of the Super Soul stone unfold, Jennie slowly transforms into a savage beast that leaves Luke and Danny looking like scared little puppies.
Cage and Rand’s uneven relationship up until this point is sketched through Sanford Greene’s choppy and rugged pencils as well as his defining inks, both of which lay the foundation for the world of this series: Harlem, New York City. Lee Loughridge’s watery and washed-out colors feel as if they can be a commentary on the life that has been drained out of their city. Tinted with dull hues of plum, orange and blue, Loughridge’s work sets up the void of goodness in Harlem, as well as the necessity for Power Man and Iron Fist to reunite as Heroes for Hire.
Pick this book up! If your local comic book shop has the back issues as well, skip a coffee or two this week and opt to grab those issues instead. Trust me: you won’t be disappointed.