Inhumans Once and Future Kings #1
Writer: Christopher Priest
Penciler : Phil Noto
Colorist : Phil Noto
Letterer : VC’s Joe Sabino
Release Date : 8/9/17
Price : $3.99
Plot: The Inhumans have tons of history, but Once and Future Kings explores how the members of the Boltagon family were brought up and what they experienced before taking over the throne.
Story: Since their beginning, the Inhumans have been through tons as a culture and community, separate from humans. Their stories have always focused around Black Bolt and the rest of the Royal Family, but there has never been much background on how these characters grew into their positions of great power. Inhumans Once and Future Kings begins to dive into this history and reveal the long past of these great characters. Writer Christopher Priest does a great job of utilizing the premiere issue to establish the characters and a blend of everything their known for while adding new layers to Black Bolt and the rest of the family.
One of the best things that Priest does within the issue is very quickly open up with Black Bolt having a problem with how the current king of the Inhumans rules. Black Bolt challenges the idea of using slaves for labor and that people are just born into that role. It’s a noble idea for Black Bolt to challenge because he is going against the current standard, which could very easily jeopardize his chances at becoming the next king. The idea is a great one to instill in Black Bolt because it shows his morals from an early age and that the future king of the Inhumans had a true sense of right and wrong, caring about the entire Inhuman population, refusing to stick to the status quo that is considered “normal.”
On top of this, Inhumans Once and Future Kings quickly wastes no time in establishing the relationship between Black Bolt and Maximus, which should be a focal point of the story going forward. Priest immediately dives into the idea that the two brothers have always butted heads with one another. The first issue quickly creates a foundation for their opposing viewpoints but does so in a way that gives readers the feel of how this is going to escalate to some extreme levels as the story continues on.
The biggest different between the two of these characters is that Maximus tries to stick to the quo and do what he believes the current King would want. Maximus is constantly trying to prove he is a loyal servant and would be able to easily pick up with the same agenda, keeping society unchanged. However, Black Bolt is unafraid to question the king’s methods and also think about the greater good of the Inhumans as a race. In the end, Maximus is always seeming to feel like he gets the short end of the stick, and Inhumans Once and Future Kings does not shy away from displaying that through the story and artwork.
Art: The artwork of Inhumans Once and Future Kings is what really elevates the book to being such a complete work of art. While Priest’s writing creates a very great story with excellent dialogue, Phil Noto once again proves to be one of the best comic book artists currently in the industry. His style of artwork has amazingly clear pencil line work that feels nicely defined but at the same time has a loose quality to it that doesn’t necessarily limit a single quality to sticking out more than the others. The artist has proven himself on other books like Star Wars: Poe Dameron but continues to adapt his style to the specific book and its setting. Noto’s work within Inhumans Once and Future Kings shows off all of the characters for the royalty they are while at the same time not selling any action sequences short, somehow managing to make them just as beautiful scenes of art that reflect the impact the battles have on the book and event.
Verdict: Inhumans Once and Future Kings has a really great team working on it with Priest and Noto steering the ship. Both of them have a great track record with proven experience and should really be able to craft a great story around the Inhumans. Noto’s art has a very majestic feeling to it that is the perfect for the Royal Family and all of these historic characters.