Writer: Mark Millar
Artist: Rafael Albuquerque
Mark Millar has become well known for creating wild stories with tense subjects or ridiculous characters. Huck, his latest series, focuses on a super-powered young man who strives to always do great things for others with little regard to how it could affect him. The first issue of the series is grounded and mostly has feel-good vibes, making Huck one of the most unique titles in the “Millarworld” line.
Millar’s Superman-like story takes place in a small town that would be normal except for Huck, the town’s closely guarded secret. Huck puts all of his resources every day into doing good deeds for those around him, using incredible powers to do so. We first see this when Huck makes a great effort running and jumping across town to retrieve a lost item for someone. The character is mostly simple and there isn’t any depth to him. The reader doesn’t even get much of a glimpse of Huck’s perspective, as most of the issue is simply the stories being told by others in the town. While Huck is a remarkable character, there aren’t any other noteworthy characters present. Huck’s neighbors feel more like plot-devices than people, and have less personality than the character they all gawk at.
The simplicity of the storytelling goes along well with the character’s personality, but there isn’t much to make this a debut as extraordinary as the titular character. Millar seems to be caught up in establishing how selfless the character is, and there isn’t much substance in the story. Millar teases the reader with glimpses of what could be in the future of Huck, but there is nothing for the reader to grip onto until the final few pages of the story.
Rafael Albuquerque more than makes up for slow story and generic characters with his stellar pencils that feel a lot like Tim Sale’s work in Superman for All Seasons. Albuquerque takes a step away from the dark tone of American Vampire and creates a simpler world with much more life. The story could be told with just the art in the panels, with multiple sequences showing Huck perform incredible acts throughout his day. The panels transition seamlessly while the action is fluid, making Huck #1 an incredibly smooth read. While the story doesn’t do much for the characters, the art breathes life into them.