Rai Makes a Triumphant Return with Rai #5

GameStop, Inc.

RAI_005_COVER-A_CRAINRai is back with Rai #5, and it was worth the wait!

Rai is one of those cases where art and text mesh perfectly, making the comic book truly a melding of the different elements. Clayton Crain works an incredible amount of detailing into the background, deepening the world and showing the ordinary life happening around the heroics. His work with facial and body language of the characters remains sharp. Better, each of the main characters is substantially different from the others in structure and movement, keeping their characters distinct.

Kindt keeps the mysteries growing as alliances form and plans are drawn. Spylocke is gathering a group to battle Father. This is an eclectic mix, none of whom is fully what they seem. Silk is of dubious morality, to say the least, having outright attempted to take over the Earth for himself in the past. Spylocke, too, is a cipher; he has the build and stance of a hero, but who is he really, and how has he stayed alive for as long as he has? And Rai is part human and part “Livewire Essence” (I still want to know what that is and how it works) Which means, among other things, that he can travel instantaneously from one point to another, that he has always been linked to Father, and that he is another unknown quantity in the group’s makeup. The newest ally is an interesting choice, to put it mildly. Meanwhile, Momo, the positronic companion freed when her abusive human owner was killed has allies and plans of her own. And Lula? What does she think she is up to?

The bonus material in the Plus Edition offers four short glimpses into life in New Japan. “Lula Lee” written Matt Kindt with art by Raúl Allén shows Lula Lee setting off on her own adventure, exploring New Japan and getting glimpses of several new sectors. In addition to showing off New Japan, it gives the reader a chance to see more of what is happening. Some of what Lula sees and thinks here makes it more likely that she will join Rai in his revolution, and her decision to make an independent journey and ability to make her way around Father’s supervision shows her value to the group. “Every Day is Great in New Japan” written by Shawn Kittelson with art by Ryan Lee and coloring by Kyle Ritter and Hi-Fi Color Designs gives a glimpse into one of the ways Father maintains his control, using careful propaganda to manipulate people. “Turn Off the Lights” by Sean Ryan and Dylan Todd is a Raddie recruitment text, and the last section is a set of Positronic Companion schematics written and designed by Dylan Todd, with notes about the durability and function of the machine/companion. The combination shows what life is like and how Father has maintained equilibrium for so long; they also show just how hard it will be for Rai and his new allies to overthrow his power.

Rai is the sort of unpredictable, character-driven story that could go almost anywhere and keep readers riveted. Highly recommended to anyone who likes great art, character development, tales of the future, and/or superheroes.

Disclaimer: This reviewer is in no way objective. She has not been objective about Rai since she read the first page of the first book.


Preview images from Rai #5. Click on any image for a larger version.






















Preview images from the Rai #5 Plus Edition. Click on any image for a larger version.









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  1. Chris H December 3, 2014 Reply
    • Avatar photo Jessica Greenlee December 3, 2014 Reply

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