POWER MAN & IRON FIST #9
Writer: David F. Walker
Penciler: Sanford Greene, Flaviano
Colorist: John Rauch
Inker: John Rauch
Letterer: VC’s Clayton Cowles
Release Date: October 12, 2016
Plot: As Luke contemplates breaking Danny out of jail, Captain Marvel interrupts to stop and arrest Power Man as Civil War II crosses over into the world of Power Man & Iron Fist #9.
Story: With Danny in jail for doing the right thing, Luke Cage is left on his own feeling somewhat at fault. Luke begins this issue in a pretty interesting position as he contemplates straight up breaking the law in order to break Iron Fist out. First, it displays the longevity and importance of the friendship between the two characters, and second, it shows the current state of the superhero world and seeing characters be locked up when they don’t necessarily deserve it. While the book doesn’t majorly crossover with Civil War II from a plot perspective, Power Man & Iron Fist’s stance on everything going on is what really hits home and the issue explores the duo’s feelings about Captain Marvel and her side of the events. David F. Walker continues to do a great job of highlighting these characters and the complexity behind them by really diving into their opinions and what they believe in.
Luke makes multiple points about how he thinks Carol has been out of line; she’s following one person’s visions, she’s caused Rhodey’s death and she has caused a divide in the superhero world that lots of people aren’t happy with. Power Man & Iron Fist focuses on two heroes who operate on a smaller local scale, and they truly stay focused on saving people. Civil War II is an interesting crossover because it’s something that neither Luke or Danny seems to want to get drawn into, and Walker definitely nails their feelings on the situation. Power Man & Iron Fist are two characters who rarely lose sight of what it means to be a hero, and that’s what makes the issue a nice crossover with Civil War II, because it brings readers back to the basic ideals of superheros and what they stand for.
On top of this, Power Man & Iron Fist does a great job of incorporating the crossover without abandoning the story it’s been telling across previous issues. This issue issue introduces a new mystery character who, as of right now, is neither really a villain or hero. The mystery figure pops up in multiple scenes this issue while the two titular heroes are preoccupied with the prison situation. Although he’s not given a name, the mystery person is popping up out of nowhere (one of his powers) and recruiting the side characters introduced through Power Man & Iron Fist. The character comes across as cool in this issue, because he’s such an unknown factor in the story and has cool powers that seem to mix technology and the supernatural. Walker is definitely planting the seeds for the future and this is a really smooth introduction to offer a unique story element moving forward.
Art: The art in Power Man & Iron Fist was really phenomenal this issue. Sanford Greene and Flaviano absolutely nailed the style and tone for this book that spews with creativity. While the individual characters are drawn really nicely with a strong pencil style (revisit closeup of Luke above), the details and emotions are all nailed pretty perfectly as well in a book that is strong with emotion. The impact of Civil War II is heavy in Power Man & Iron Fist #9 and both artist really nail the tone through their artwork and drawing styles.
On top of this, Civil War II also makes this book heavy with action sequences because the majority of the story is the prison fight. The three artists involved do a phenomenal job of drawing and coloring these fight scenes with insane detail and a fun style. There are a lot of long thin fight sequence panels that really help to show the escalation of this fight and how much is actually going on at once. These art really flows nicely but the drawing style is a blend of gritty and fast-paced that feels appropriate for how much ground is covered throughout the issue.
John Rauch also really brings the art to life with his color choices within Power Man & Iron Fist #9. The book itself is very well balanced in a way that puts reader’s focus into a specific area while also making the characters pop. Whether it’s the closeups of Luke in the serious panel from above that feature a damp grey behind his bold skin and shirt colors or the pretty spread of bold colors in the action sequence, they work nicely. Power Man & Iron Fist has a bright tone in it and while the material is not necessarily the happiest because of the Civil War II inclusion, the coloring keeps the charismatic feel usually present.
Verdict: The team for Power Man & Iron Fist are creating a really successful book. David F. Walker is an incredible writer that continues to properly balance each issue. The book balances story and art well and brings the characters to life, providing them with the appropriate depth and opinions. Power Man & Iron Fist is a ton of fun while also staying serious and developing an interesting story.