Writer: Joe Bennett, Jeff Lemire / Artist: Sandra Hope, Matt Santorelli / DC Comics
ELEMENT WORLD! – Part Two
Bennett and Lemire open The Terrifics #6 in an exceedingly meta-style that utilizes the comic format in such a simple, innovative but tongue-in-cheek way. The framing of the principle cast in four different monitors as a shadowy figure observes them is perfectly executed. Each of the Terrifics gets their own bit of real estate, their own identifiable color scheme and background, and their own emotional beats. It’s essentially four different stories told in parallel and due to the structure, it’s also incredibly easy to follow.
Element World offers such a unique playground for the different members to explore. Each of their individual arcs is characterized by trippy artwork, touching moments, and snappy pacing. Everything in the issue moves briskly. While Bennett and Lemire could have easily stretched this out, their decision to condense the story into quick beats creates stronger emotional moments. Overall, this accelerates the story with a brilliantly minimalist flair.
As far as superhero team stories go, The Terrifics is near-perfectly balanced. Exposition is handled deftly. The artwork is enchanting, embracing the colorful world of science fiction realms and Saturday morning cartoons. Furthermore, it’s the type of story that leverages the comic format in unique ways. The paneling techniques employed should be studied by aspiring creators, and the dynamic shots are just awe-inspiring.
This series feels like a Saturday Morning Cartoon reincarnated for New Comic Book Day Wednesdays. It’s a little darker, a little moodier; but features that same high-strung energy that makes superhero stories fun. There’s a surprising amount to latch onto, and every issue continues to be a much-appreciated breath of levity.
8.8 “Monitors” out of 10
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