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Titanium Rain #1

Posted: Thursday, March 5, 2009
By: Karyn Pinter

Josh Finney
Josh Finney & Kat Rocha
Archaia Studios Press
The year is 2031 and mankindís survival instinct is put to the test when a civil war in China spirals into global conflict. Nations are destroyed. Millions are killed. And for many, like the US Air Force pilot Alec Killian, survival will mean shedding some of his humanity in exchange for biotech and machine. Is this the ultimate corruption of nature? Or, the birth of a new chapter in mankindís evolution?


Sorry to use a direct quote here, but really, I couldnít do better then what was already written. I picked up Titanium Rain at Wonder Con in San Francisco as I buzzed around the publisher booths. To be honest, I almost didnít pick this one up, but my buddy David said I should take a look at it because he thought it looked pretty cool. I got a short rundown from Kat Rocha, one of the creators, who told me it was kinda like Battlestar Galactica. Very true words. I did see some similarities between the two, including, but not limited to a poker game between pilots. But this poker game helps set the tone for the war that is going on in Titanium Rain. Itís the biggest part of the story so far, and used as a metaphor. Stakes are raised higher and higher until it ultimately comes to an abrupt end, and the pilots are sent out to fight.

It seems like thereís been a huge influx of sci-fi war comics in the past year, or maybe itís just that I gravitate to them. Who knows? But, having read so many of them, I can tell you which ones are crap and which ones are pretty damn good. Titanium Rain is definitely on the good side of the spectrum, although Iíll have to be honest, it isnít my favorite of the ones Iíve read. Still, itís a valiant effort. Itís always nice to see a lower key to war stories. Whatís happening off the battlefield? The character studies, the down time, personal lives. Thatís the kinda stuff thatís interesting. Sure, blowing stuff up is nice and it draws a good audience, but sometimes we need to seek out the calm. Thatís where the poker scene comes in.

Now I am not a huge fan of Photoshop in comics--thatís the primary tool used in Titanium Rain and itís pretty obvious. Although Photoshop is used, itís not the worst job Iíve seen. I think it actually works out in favor of the comic. Itís almost like looking at a high-end video game. It ads a surreal feeling and some of the art is fairly impressive. A good example would be the first page. Itís really clean and sharp with good colors. One other thing that stood out was one word bubble in particular. Just as a character is shot down he lets out an ďarchĒ in a bloody word bubble. I donít think Iíve seen anything like that before, and it really caught my eye as something new and different.

All in all, Titanium Rain was a pretty good comic. Not much happening in the first issue, but it ends with a set up for some fighter pilot action. The writing seemed a little forced and lengthy in some spots, but wasnít dry and conveyed a message, even if it did take some time to get there. If youíre a fan of the genre, then perhaps you might want to check this one out.



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