One Last Adventure…In An Arcade Game?! Cosmo #5 Advance Review

by James Ferguson

Cosmo and his crew are fresh off a fight with Battle Princess Cleo. They venture off looking for their next adventure only to make an emergency landing on Arcadea outside of our solar system. It’s a resort planet full of games and food so it’s a nice place for a little rest and relaxation while the ship is repaired. This starts out simple enough but this crew is like a magnet for chaos so Cosmo gets sucked into an arcade machine and has to fight his way out.

The scenes within the game are incredible. Artists Evan Stanley and Mauro Fonseca create this three dimensional version of a two dimensional world filled with homages to classic video games like Mega Man, Sonic the Hedgehog, and Super Mario Bros. There’s a unique spin on the typical platform game with some crazy looking sprites from Fonseca. My personal favorite is the menacing one-eyed umbrella carrying a knife. What is that guy’s story? He looks so angry. Why does he have a knife? Who’s he looking for?
Cosmo’s tale gets even more complicated when Max puts a quarter in to play the game, forcing the Martian to move based on the joystick. For his sake, I hope Max is a gamer. We see all of the levels play out in a big montage of a double-page spread filled with even more nods to classic titles. This is like a dream come true for any fan of the medium.

Matt Herms’ colors have always been on point, but really excel in the game world. The backgrounds are a little faded, allowing Cosmo and the other sprites to really stand out on the page. Each new world they enter is filled with classic elements of gaming with the look of an 8 or 16 bit creation upgraded to a more detailed environment.
While all this is going on, the rest of the crew are looking for parts to fix the ship or doing some research. Each one of them gets at least a couple pages and some great jokes. Writer Ian Flynn spends time to develop each character’s personality so you get a good sense of who they are and what makes them tick. Artist Tracy Yardley brings each of them to life with a lot of energy. They all work well together, complementing each other on the crew to make for a solid cohesive unit. This could have all been about Cosmo and it would have been a fun tale, but we get a little extra flavor with the rest of the team as they’re still a very important part of the book.

This issue is the end for Cosmo for now. The mini-series doesn’t have a real ending as the adventure very clearly continues. The crew gets a lead for their next mission and jet out the door. I just wish we were able to follow them out there because this comic has been a great read from beginning to end. We need more comics like this. This is a fun all-ages sci-fi adventure book that really speaks to everyone. If you were ever a child, you will like Cosmo. It captures that wide-eyed excitement that has enthralled millions of people over the years with movies like Star Wars, speaking to a very specific part of everyone’s inner child.
Cosmo #5 is scheduled for release on May 25th, 2018 at your local comic shop and digitally through ComiXology and Amazon Kindle.

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