Comic Scope: Introducing Mega Man

Come catch up on Archie’s Mega Man comic as Comic Scope gets ready to roll!

By Robert Marrujo. Posted 06/19/2014 09:00 Comment on this     ShareThis

Welcome back to another installment of Comic Scope, where we bring the world of video game comics to your doorstep. Last time, we did an overview of Archie Comics’ Sonic the Hedgehog and Sonic Universe titles, and today we’ll be breaking down its take on Mega Man! The series has been running for over two years now, and features all the familiar faces we’ve come to love from the games. Like Sonic, though, Archie has interjected its own unique creations and characters into the mix, giving Mega Man a diverse and interesting world that’s familiar to, but separate from the games.

Mega Man and his little sister Roll are the robotic children of Doctor Thomas Light. Light believes that man, united with intelligent, independent robots, can make the world a better place. His colleague and former-friend, Doctor Albert Wily, prefers robots to humans, and wants to use them in his endless schemes to take over the world. Anyone who has played the games will find this setup pretty familiar, and indeed, the series follows the blueprints of Mega Man and Mega II fairly closely through its first few arcs. Things have changed a bit in the issues since then, though, finding Mega Man tackling adventures that are parts original and parts borrowed from games throughout the series. Writer Ian Flynn, who also helms both of Archie’s Sonic series, has gone through painstaking efforts to research the entire canon of Mega Man while adding his wonderful, unique voice to the mix.

As of late, Flynn’s influence continues to grow and evolve the Mega Man mythos. The original Robot Masters from Mega Man on NES are allies and mainstays in the comic, which has been handled brilliantly, so far. Delving into what are essentially throwaway characters in the games gives them an entirely different dimension to enjoy. There are also a couple of budding romances to keep track of, too, as Ice Man is coming to terms with his feelings for Roll, who in turn is trying to get Mega Man together with Quake Woman. Perhaps one of the most interesting characters in the comic, though, is Proto Man, or Blues, who is Dr. Light’s first attempt at creating robotic life. Proto has switched allegiances over the course of the series and has a very layered and nuanced personality. Watching him come to terms with his past while learning to live in the present, his journey has been a real highlight.

That brings us neatly to the present arc, which is packed with activity. Mega Man is reluctantly leading the charge to take down Ra Moon, who nearly killed him. Proto Man continues to grapple with his conflicting emotions, escaping into his darker Break Man identity. Proto is struggling to understand that Dr. Light never intentionally tried to hurt him, but it’s taking some effort to make the notion stick in his mind. Dr. Wily is at an interesting crossroads, himself, with Mega Man and company unsure whether the villain has reformed or is keeping a nasty trick up his sleeve. Finally, Mega Man X is being tested out in the pages of the comic with his own back-up feature. If fans demand it, we could potentially see a solo X comic, so that should give you double incentive to start picking up the series!

Speaking of incentive, Mega Man is also one of the best-illustrated comics being put out by Archie. The line art is bold, detailed, and perfectly captures the spirit of the games. I’ve enjoyed a lot of the Mega Man manga art that I’ve seen (we’ll talk those in a future Comic Scope), but they tend to skew towards a grittier version of the character. Not that I’m opposed, of course, but Archie seems to have captured an aspect of the character that has tended to be neglected in his comic book history. The coloring is equally gorgeous, with bright colors that allow the actual art to breathe while adding just the right spark to every panel. In a world of computer colored comics, that’s a lot harder to accomplish than one would think. Extra special shout out to Patrick “Spaz” Spaziante. The veteran Sonic artist has been a mainstay at Archie over the years, and when the comapny brought him on to help bring Mega Man to life, it was a personal thrill, for me. His work is excellent, and his backup piece in issue 35 featuring X looks brilliant.

In the coming weeks, we’ll be doing individual issue recaps for Mega Man, Sonic the Hedgehog, and Sonic Universe, as well as any other titles that catch our interest. Any other series that you’d like to see us cover? Please keep your requests video game and Nintendo-centric, and we’ll see what we can do! Hit up the comments, and click the links below to get your hands on these awesome books!

  • – Order physical copies and learn how to get digital copies on your smartphone or tablet!
  • – Find a local brick and mortar shop and support a local business!

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