Friday, August 3, 2018

Book Review: Ant-Man: Astonishing Origins by T. DeFalco et al.

Ant-Man: Astonishing Origins written by Tom DeFalco with art by Horatio Domingues and color art by Chris Sotomayor

Two stories are told in this book. First is a new origin story for Hank Pym, the original Ant-Man. Second is a story about Scott Lang, the current Ant-Man.

The first story reads like a modern reboot. Newlywed Hank Pym loses his wife to an apparent terrorist attack in Hungary where she was about to present at a science conference. Hank is a bit paranoid about it (Were they really targeting him or his wife? Were they sent by his American enemies/competitors?) and is quite self-aware about his paranoia. He doesn't trust his dad, who is unsupportive to say the least. He does get Hank a job at Egghead Industries, though Hank thinks its just a set up to exploit him. He's given an assistant who seems like a spy rather than a helper. Under pressure, he hides the best part of his work hoping to use it for his own advantage rather than the corporation.

I found the whole focus on paranoia less interesting and less compelling. It didn't make Hank more heroic, just pathetic. He doesn't come off as particularly clever either. On the other hand, he does have the courage and stick-to-it-ness that heroes need. Overall, I wasn't all that impressed.

The second story follows Scott Lang as he applies for a security job at Stark Industries. Scott has been Ant-Man for a while and his life is in shambles. He wants to reconnect with his daughter while avoiding his ex. He's living in a squalid New York apartment. And it looks like he'll have to play dirty if he wants to beat the other candidates for the job.

This story is much better. While his plight is mostly his own doing, Scott puts some effort in to make things better for himself and his daughter.

The book is a mixed bag, some good, some bad, making it a totally average book.

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