Do fans need this in their collection? Read on to find out.

The official description from Aspen:

Michael Turner’s FATHOM returns!

Aspen’s first ever FATHOM ANNUAL arrives, jam-packed with three all new stories featuring some of the most popular characters in the Fathom universe—and more! Join veteran FATHOM writer David Wohl as he gives us an inside look at Aspen’s former love interest, Chance Calloway, and his thrilling exploits away from her, as he adapts to a whole new world of Blue and Human cooperation! Fan favorite illustrator Nei Ruffino debuts a new FATHOM story all her own, as she handles the writing and art duties in a special tale featuring Aspen Matthews and her new close friend Judith! And Fathom: Kiani writer Vince Hernandez takes Aspen Matthews on a journey to discover a lost city hidden deep under the surface of the water, only what she discovers instead is far more shocking!

Fathom Annual 1_Preview PageThis is a compilation release with re-issued experiences and more experiences with a handful of characters. So if you’re a fan of the property than the creative teams involved certainly have something for you. Though if you’re new this might not be the best jump on point.

David Wohl, Nei Ruffino, Vince Hernandez and Scott Lobdell all contribute to this issue. The literary masters spin their arcs with finesse as each brings just enough of their own trademark originality to this annual. I’ll admit that some of the dialogue was a bit clunky and it took a while for me to get into “Out of Body Experience” but the added glimpse into the past, courtesy of “Discovery” reminded me of the origins of the franchise. I’ll be frank “Past Imperfect” and “Better Left Unsaid” were my favorites.

The visual side had a lot of complimentary renditions that greatly favored the text they were attached to. The re-printed pages by Michael Turner stood out while Dennis Calero, Jordan Gunderson and Nei Ruffino all jumped in with works that showed a modern and slightly different touch for familiar peoples and places. I did fine some of the facial formations and a few of the panels to be a tad bit too bland but that’s honestly nitpicking with an already promising display.

Michael Turner’s Fathom Annual #1 graces 2014 with structure and enough worthy bits to garner attention. In the end the whole of the package easily earned a recommendation from me.

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