Advance Review: ‘Kaiju Score’ #1 Makes For A Great Elevator Pitch, But Not Necessarily A Great Comic
by Olly MacNamee
Kaiju Score #1 is a paint-by-the-numbers debut issue that mixes genres in an attempt at originality. Great art, but a predictable opening issue doesn’t do this new series any favours.
Described as something akin to Godzilla coming crashing into a Quentin Tarantino heist movie, Kaiju Score #1 is already a soaraway success with some. Even before the first issue hit the shelves we learnt that it will be developed and adapted into film by Sony Pictures. So, what did they see in this new series from AfterShock Comics and creators James Patrick And Rem Boo?
Well, as you may expect with any debut issue, it has to establish characters, and motivation. Unfortunately, it does that in a very traditional way we’ve seen countless times before in such narratives. We drop in on the candidates for this particular big money, big risk heist and learn a little bit about each one of them and their specialty field.
And given that we already know it’s a story of four criminals taking up the heist of a lifetime, but under the very nose of a foreboding kaiju colossus, I don’t think it’s spoiling it too much to repeat that again here. I mean, this is just the set-up and the creators have promised us far more than this simple scenario. What we will be shown is the individual journeys these frazzled four undertake by taking on this commission. So, yeah, very Reservoir Dogs so far. But, it all feels like any Act One of countless heist movies. It’s just this one’s unique selling point involves kajiu monsters instead of, say, sleight of hand (Now You See Me) or hillbillies (Logan Lucky). You can tack on any number of tropes from other genres onto a heist film, but that doesn’t make for a great story, just distractible window dressing.
We get to step into a world used to Kaiju occurrences. Like storm season in Florida, kaijus can be equally predictable and destructive … unless you follow the rules that is.
After the first issue I can’t say I’m too taken by this new series. Other than the addition of the kaiju angle to this otherwise unremarkable heist story, and some great artwork from Boo, I don’t see how this is so big a deal that it’s already got a film deal with Sony. It’s hardly the most original of ideas and the characters aren’t supposed to be liked, so I’m not sure I’d bother picking up the second issue of this particular series. I’ve read my fair share of anti-heroes recently. I don’t think I can take another crew of losers and down-and-outs.
For me this feels like a watered down take on Image Comics’ great but unfinished Leviathan, but with a heist movie narrative tacked on in an attempt to seem original. It might make for a great elevator pitch, but I’m not too sure it’ll make for an interesting enough comic book. It’s saving grace is the artwork of Rem Boo, who brings a style that reflects the more humorous side to this story while also delivering dramatic scenes with weight, too.
Kaiju Score #1 is out Wednesday 25th November from Aftershock Comics