After a beautiful set-up, Twilight Zone #3 tries to deepen the mystery of who’s taken over Trevor Richmond’s life by adding a heavy dose of backstory. But the deeper we get, the more we begin to realize this simple truth: this Trevor dude is a dick.
Here’s the official word from Dynamite:
When Trevor Richmond left behind his old life, the last thing he expected was that someone else might move in to take his place. But that’s exactly what has happened. Who is the man everyone now knows as Trevor? Where did he come from, and maybe more to the point…what does he want? The secrets are revealed right here…
Those of us who love the the Twilight Zone would probably agree there’s an established code of expectations about what kind of stories this series should deliver: a morality tale with a bit of horror, a bit of sci-fi, and an abrupt pivot that (ideally) makes your skin crawl. But I’d also add one more item to the list: it should be pithy. The Twilight Zone was not, after all, a collection of multi-series arcs but one-shots crafted to sucker-punch viewers in jaw (not pummel them with prolonged body shots). With issue #3 writer J. Michael Straczynski might be showing us why short is better. After two beautifully crafted issues rich with eerie detail and mysterious secret agencies, issue #3 is mostly backstory that weighs the momentum of this arc down. The backstory is great, but title character Trevor Richmond doesn’t get much action in this issue. The central story stalls as a result. Trevor just wanders around drunk, angry, and moaning like a baby. And yes, it gets a little annoying.
Artist Guiu Vilanova seems to be having a blast with the booze fest in issue #3, however. We get some of his best art here: exploding bottles, inebriated faces pushed up against windows, and more staggering than you’d see at a St. Patty’s day parade.
Overall issue #3 feels offers some helpful backstory, but at the expense of momentum. Still, Straczynski is such a strong writer that even his mid-level work is better than most things out there.