Review: Mystery And Marketing In ‘American Ronin’ #1

by Benjamin Hall


Corporations rule all and war against each other. Their soldiers are loyal only to their respective corporation. However, one soldier has become unbound from his conditioning. He is now a ronin seeking to take down this network of corporations. Yet is this truly happening?


The cover of this issue is more basic marketing methodology than it is an actual cover. Meaning that the colors of red and yellow are in use only to create urgency and possibly caution. As for the art it is way too minimalistic. Though the line work shows confidence and a high skill level. While the text is fine in size and font selection the color palette and art take away from the logo’s creativity. However, it is different enough from other covers that it may draw certain readers in.

American Ronin #1 (2020) Cover by ACO

Writer Peter Milligan provides a relatively decent script. There is enough characterization to make the characters feel two to three dimensional. Yet the amount of set-up is rather low. This is a problem with how this first issue relies on the reader knowing the series concept from solicitations. Also Milligan’s writing sometimes feels more necessary than the interior art by artist ACO. Meaning both art and script tell the same narrative yet not quite in the same way. Though Milligan does a good job at hooking readers with various mysteries, such as will the character succeed and who will survive.

The interior art and colors are much better than the cover. ACO’s art features details that are well thought out, with the exception of one panel from a worm’s eye view. Also the texture is impressively subtle in places. As for the colors by colorist Dean White, they are few in selection, but they look diverse in application. Most of the palette seems to be yellow, red, and some variations of pink.

The opening page visuals combine with the lettering by letterer Sal Cipriano in a slightly disorienting way. Thus, those who get vertigo easily may have trouble with this page. However, there are no typos. Also the yellow background in the text boxes becomes a little easier to the eyes as one reads through the issue. Lastly, the large amount of text gets put in positions that allow readers to still see the art.

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