Under the Net with Jake Estrada
The Johnny Saturn review
Hi, folks. My name is Jake Estrada, and this is my first review for this site. I would like to take a moment to thank Frankie Rodriguez for this chance to become a reviewer under his established umbrella. Here are a few guidelines for my reviews. I will be looking at the art, storyline, set-up, originality, and the consistency of all things related within the context of the comic, and I will go from there to give an in-depth review.
My angle will be web comics and independent comics. I feel that there are plenty of hidden gems out there that need the time of day, and if I can expand this market by sharing the books I read and enjoy, then I will do everything in my power to make it possible.
I will be rating the elements of the book on a scale of one through five. One is poor, two is mediocre, three is fair, four is good, and five is excellent.
The first title up for review is an awesome title called Johnny Saturn. It is drawn by Scott Story and co-written by Benita Story with occasional assists from other creators. Yet, the brunt of the material has been solely created by these two fine creators who have been working on this title since 2004. There is a clear passion for this character, and they do have a following for this title. I must say that I enjoy reading it when I make my visits to the site to see what is going on with the leading character. The storyline has been one wild rollercoaster, and it is a great read. Scott Story has created a massive superhero universe, which is set in Spire City. Most of the fisticuffs and battles take place here as the heroes and villains all conspire to either protect or destroy this fine city. The drama plays out in a soap opera-like nature, but I must admit that Scott Story is not following the general rule book that plenty of people fall prey to. He is trying to create an original universe of his own. He is having fun, and it shows in his work.
The Art and Writing
The artwork on the title is very good. It harkens back to a time when artists drew in this classic style. Of course, I have recently found out and you can tell in his latest offerings that his work has been infused with digital elements, which is totally fine. In his earlier works, you could tell everything was done by pen and pencil, but certain things are now being done digitally, and it works well. Scott Story has found a good way of meshing the two together. I know I most definitely enjoy his artwork and I think he has come up with some great illustrative layouts. He has a great sense of control of the page, and he knows how to pace his artwork nicely. You can see the time and skill he uses for certain pages that have no dialogue. In his recent pages, one of his heroes turned on his friends and had to stage a devastating attack, which had the hero in tears. The raw emotion was powerful and very moving to say the least. Much like the art, the writing is very important to this series and has held the series together very well. The art and writing propelled this series for more than 15 books. I must say that it is a breath of fresh air when I read this series. My hat goes off to Scott Story and Benita Story.
ART: 4 STARS
WRITING: 4 STARS
The set up of the site is beautiful and very easy to navigate. You can read about the series set up, how it started, and how the series has progressed. You can see that the creators are all about shaking up the status quo, and that is what I am talking about here. This is the stuff comic book fans always talk about. They think that nothing in comics changes, and that things remain the same. Well, that isn’t true about Johnny Saturn. This series has gone through a drastic change throughout the years, and the story evolves and grows more engrossing. If you want to spice it up, this is a book that you should check out and support.
Some may argue that the superhero genre is dead, and that Johnny Saturn is a Batman rip off, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. To be quite honest, Johnny Saturn is a blend of different types of characters. When I read this series, it feels like a clash of Greek tragedy and modern flavorings of the superhero genre that I wish other comics would attempt to put out there. I am very happy to see that Scott Story is not afraid to mix it up and take the necessary risks to keep his story original.
ORIGINALITY: 5 STARS
Grand total: 4.1 STARS
If you are looking for an original and engaging story that will hold your interest, that is different from the big two offerings, and that is willing to take risks, then this is the series for you. The story is original, and the artwork is fresh and engaging. You never know what Scott Story will pull next.
I can’t really say there are many cons. I wish that the book would update everyday, but that would be difficult because this book has been published by a two-person team since 2004. Once again, congratulations to you two for producing such a high quality product in a timely manner on a weekly schedule.
My Final Word
Read this book. It’s fresh, it’s original, and it’s fun.
The comic updates on Mondays and Thursdays weekly. You can find it at http://johnnysaturn.com
Jake Estrada is a published author who holds degrees in Multimedia Design and Criminal Justice. He is a father to three wonderful children and married to his beautiful wife, Beth. You can find his comics at http://graphicly.com/estrada-mediaand other fine online stores.