Image’s Dynamo 5 first appeared in 2007, created by writer Jay Faerber and artist Mahmud A. Asrar. Like Faerber’s other superhero family title, Noble Causes, Dynamo 5 focuses on a mixed team of heroes and the complications that come from being siblings and world savers. The tag-line, “Strangers bound by fate, and a father they never knew,” sums it up pretty well. The intriguing premise is that the world’s foremost superhero Captain Dynamo, wasn’t such a great husband, and sired at least 5 illegitimate children. Now he’s dead, and his widow, Maddie Warner, rounds up these kids, all of whom have inherited one of their Dad’s powers, and shapes them into a team – Dynamo 5. That’s a great launching point for any series.
This issue begins in an unusual place for an ATM – a park, as several drooling people rip it open and toss bystanders aside. Cops on horseback arrive, but the situation doesn’t get resolved until Dynamo 5 land and disperse the madmen (and women). The thankful cops blame the outpouring of a new drug called Flex onto the streets of Tower City for this rampant violence, as it increases strength while lowering inhibitions. The 5 siblings disperse, dedicated to launching their own investigation, but not before 2 of them go on dates, because balance is important in a busy superhero’s life. Visionary, otherwise known as Hector Chang, proves he’s the romantic by bringing flowers to the door of Firebird, otherwise known as Emily Reed. At the same time, Scrap, AKA Bridget Flynn, feels uncertainty as she waits for her on-line date to arrive at a coffee shop. Her fears seem to be erased as Nate turns up and the pair discuss their mutual disgust for poor grammar. Sounds like my kinda gal. After some inappropriate wordplay, the pair’s discussions are interrupted by…yep, a mouth frother demanding cash. Bridget rolls her eyes and is about to pounce on the thief, superhero style, but is beaten to it by Nate, who handles himself rather well with a gumball machine.
At the same time, Hector and Emily find the park too boring so suit up and blast things in the Shark Tank – the underwater workout area in the 5′s HQ. Beating up robots is far more bonding than looking at trees.
Meanwhile, the remaining 3 members of the team (Myriad, Scatterbrain and Slingshot) discuss the recent revelation of Maddie’s past. The issue ends on 3 different cliff-hangers, which is pretty impressive in itself. They’d mean more to a long-time reader, and I can’t say if they’re true to how the characters have been portrayed thus far, but they’re interesting surprises nonetheless and give Faerber a lot to play with in future issues.
I have the first Trade sitting unread on my shelf, with far too many other unopened books, but as a newbie to this title it reads well. It’s a good jumping on point for new readers as it introduces the team members and their different powers with ease, as well as their alter egos. Asrar styles the issue fluidly, and Yildiray Cinar, the artist on Faerber’s other family/superhero series, Noble Causes pitches in too, but the shift in artists is hardly noticeable. Each of the team member’s red and blue costumes look varied enough and it’s easy to identify who’s who. The fight scenes are handled dynamically, as are the facial expressions, whether it be Emily’s nervousness or the drug user’s mania. The Flex set-up seems like it will only lead to more action and danger, while the two superhero romances surely could go anywhere.
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