Wondering what Somebody’s First Comic Book is all about? The explanation is on this page!
TITLE: In the Midnight Hour
Writer: R.A. Jones
Pencils: Dean Zachary
Inks: Ken Branch
Colors: Keith Conroy
Letters: Tim Eldred
Editor: Roland Mann
Cover Art: Dean Zachary, Mike Miller & Albert Calleros
Publisher: Malibu Comics
PRIOR KNOWLEDGE: Not only have I never heard of this “Ferret” individual, I’m struggling to figure out exactly why this comic book is in the shape of his head.
IMPRESSIONS: The story here is actually relatively simple. We meet the Ferret, a superhero who seems to be a bit hampered because he’s a member of a group called the Protectors, and because of that the criminal element of the city knows he won’t kill them. So he has to find alternative ways to brutalize the hell out of them. Meanwhile, in a hospital somewhere, a big ugly green dude called Toxin wakes up and intends to kill the hell out of the Ferret. We encounter the Ferret in his secret identity of Cal Denton, a rock singer wearing clothes he stole from 1972. Despite this, an attractive woman called Midnight Blue (seriously) starts hitting on him after one of his shows and immediately before Toxin attacks him.
Despite the rather silly synopsis, the book isn’t too difficult to understand. I’ve really got no clue who the Ferret is or what he’s about, but as a generic superhero fighting a generic supervillain, he seems straightforward enough. None of these characters seem particularly deep, so I don’t even feel like I’m missing out by not knowing anything about who they are. Heck, the only reason I’m sure that the “Protectors” are a superhero group is because there are a few ads for their own comic scattered throughout this one.
The writing is so-so, and the art is really weak. Nobody poses in the positions these characters routinely employ, and Cal Denton looks dated as hell, even considering that this comic book was published in 1993. And I still can’t figure out why the book is cut in the shape of the Ferret’s head. It doesn’t seem to have anything to do with the story, it adds nothing to the reading experience, and it actually makes it a little difficult to hold the book without fear of accidentally crumpling it up. I’m starting to understand why this guy didn’t become a superstar some time in the last 18 years.