It’s been two months since we had an issue of Great Pacific, but in the world of Chas Worthington, it’s been a year and a half since issue six. The book’s tone changes noticeably: where the first arc combined adventure with corporate intrigue, issue seven feels like a western with elements of political intrigue. Here’s the official description from Image:
“NATION BUILDING,” Part One
New arc! Great jumping on point! Over a year has passed since “The Battle of New Texas” and the settlement has opened a plastic frontier rife with opportunity. But when eco-terrorists threaten plans for expansion, a growing cast of patriots, plunderers, monsters and thieves conspire to tear it all down.
In some ways, a new arc combined with a time jump feels like exactly the shot in the arm Joe Harris‘s story needed. The complex plot and character interactions that dominated the last few issues are pushed aside as we’re introduced to a new status quo that is, for the moment, easy to grasp. Unfortunately, some problems, like the broken, difficult to follow dialogue, quickly reemerge. It’s also becoming increasingly obvious that Chas is not a very likable person. Not because he’s rich, and not even, necessarily, because he’s arrogant (though that’s part of it). Despite being constantly told, and occasionally shown (when the plot demands it), how brilliant Chas is, we’re seeing that he’s not very smart. Here, he’s already beginning to make the same mistakes as before, and his companions, namely best friend – and Secretary of State – Alex, continue to go along with what him.
I’m actually pretty relieved for artist Martín Morazzo, as the development of an actual town for the setting means he’s no longer forced to draw ten thousand individual plastic water bottles in every panel. He does maintain a high level of detail in his backgrounds, and also captures the frontier town setting brilliantly. The buildings look simultaneously pre-fabricated and cobbled together, and the touches of futuristic technology almost lend the book a “Fallout” kind of feel. Morazzo’s figures, while still long in their faces, exhibit more character in their posing. Morazzo also maintains his trademark panoramic panels and varied viewing angles.
This new volume of Great Pacific offers intriguing new setting, conflict, and status quo, but unfortunately suffers from the same faulty character work.
Zac will be happy when E3 is over and the internet can return to “normal”.