Atlas Comics #1 and #2 : Mutants Unite!
Set in a not so distant future, Atlas observes the possibility of mutants and posits a world that embraces them.
Atlas #1 and #2
Creators: Lon Nowak, Jack Ciolli and Liz Lundblade
Publisher: Self-published, visit atlascomic.com
Release Dates: #1 February 17, 2014 and #2 June 20, 2014
Available for FREE (donations accepted)
Unlike the popular and foremost narrative of mutants known as X-Men, Atlas constructs a world where those with special abilities are welcomed into the fold of society rather than persecuted. Set twenty years after a company known as Teffler has botched an energy surge and caused a cataclysmic explosion, humans have rebuilt a nearly demolished world. The explosion killed some victims immediately while others suffered long-term effects such as cancer. Perhaps more alarming is the children alive during the incident have developed super-human abilities. However, in the universe of Atlas, these children are not shunned nor feared by society but are instead protected –specifically by the Silverline organization, which manages each special individual case.
While I found some parts of the story a bit muddled, I did enjoy the new take on an old genre. Atlas, a self published comic, takes the mutant world and offers it the opportunity to be itself without the backlash of bigotry. While this may be a utopian ideal, it does allow the arc to go in some different directions. Created by Lon Nowak, Jack Ciolli, and Liz Lundblade, Atlas posts each issue on its website where readers can download PDF’s right to their devices for free. All the trio asks for is a small donation so they may continue doing what they love. This may very well be the future of the self-published comics industry.
Atlas begins its tale with an eight page introductory issue which lays out the “Teffler incident” and how its effects rippled through the entire planet. Issue # 1 jumps ahead twenty years to our five main characters, all young mutants maneuvering through this new existence. The writing was at times all over the place, but it did give a sense of the haphazard nature of the incident. The scenes jumped around and I got the impression the writers were attempting to create a feeling of uncertainty. I did appreciate a full website which allowed me to read through a character synopsis and also helped to create a sense of connection to each personality. This helped me understand the abilities of these young superheroes. The art style is reminiscent of Bruce Timm, best known for Batman:The Animated Series, and the characters are both colorful and full of emotion.
Atlas was altogether a great introduction for this indie team and a bright beginning to their new superhero series. Check out Atlas at AtlasComic.com and be sure to donate!