Brian K. Vaughan – Ex Machina, Vol. 1: The First Hundred Days
Length: 136 pages
Genre: Superhero Science Fiction
Started/Finished: 14 March 2014
Where did it come from? The library.
Why do I have it? I like Brian K. Vaughan, and I like the idea of reading a graphic novel series that’s already complete.
can seem less than human; this
guy is something more.
Summary: Mitchell Hundred has been many things in his life. He started out as an engineer, until an accident with a strange mechanism attached to the Brooklyn Bridge gave him the power to control machines with his voice. Then he turned into a vigilante, wanting to be a superhero, but oftentimes causing just as much damage as he attempts to prevent. Now he’s been elected as the mayor of New York City, attempting to do good by working within the system, even though that system is rife with political tension. But before he can get comfortable in his new position, a string of attacks makes Mitchell suspect that one of his old enemies has resurfaced, even as he’s attempting to keep his powers harnessed.
Review: Brian K. Vaughan’s done a lot of stuff that I really enjoy. Y: The Last Man was uneven at times, but had a great concept and a lot of interesting ideas and moments, and I am loving the hell out of Saga. Ex Machina has a lot of the same sensibilities – something about the flow of the story and the tone of the dialogue makes it very clear that it’s the same author as those others – but its subject matter is not as much in my wheelhouse. I certainly enjoy superhero stories well enough, but mayoral politics (politics in general, honestly) are just not my favorite cup of tea. But the story is just getting going, and I feel like it’s going to have some interesting things to say about superheroes and the nature of heroism, especially in a post-September-11th world, so I’m definitely willing to stick around for that. 4 out of 5 stars.
Recommendation: Hard to tell yet, although if you like Vaughan’s other work it’s probably a good bet you’ll like this one too. I’m also getting kind of a Watchmen vibe off the storyline so far; we’ll see how much that’s borne out as the story continues.
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