Domo arigato, Mr. Roboto
Written by:Tom King
Art by: Gabriel Hernandez Walta & Jordie Bellaire
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date: July 13, 2016
Review by: Branden Murray
Well, it’s time to get back in the saddle again for another ride on the most enjoyably depressing roller coaster I’ve ever been on in my life. Tom King returns for more of his twisted adventures involving the Vision and his created family Virginia, Vin, Viv, and Victor placed in a suburban “Wonderland”. So, are we still looking at doom and gloom for our semi-lovable androids? Will things get worse before they get better? Or are they finally on a path towards redemption before King goes exclusively DC? Will I stop asking so many damn questions and start the review? Yes...yes I will.
Last issue ended on quite the cliffhanger. We found out that Victor, who is Vision’s brother and also created by Ultron, has been sent by the Avengers to “spy” and “report” on the Vision family. Vin stumbled upon these plans, playing with the family dog, and was paying dearly for his misstep at the hands of his Uncle Victor when things wrapped up in June’s eighth issue.
So, we pick up this newest issue right where we left off, as Virginia (the mother) is looking all over the house for Vin and extremely worried he’s not around. Vision puts little thought into the situation and plays it off as a “boys will be boys” type scenario trying to move on with his day. Vision must have walked in on a lil’ Jim Werner in a previous life to know better than to hunt down a teenage boy who doesn’t want to be found.
Across the street, we see poor Vin continue being magnetized/shocked by his Uncle Victor in the empty lot he stumbled into. As Vin struggles to get free, Victor pleads and begs with him to calm down as “he can explain things”. At this point, we get a middle act, consisting of mostly a flashback, involving Victor. If I had to elevator pitch this flashback it can be summed up into a brief glimpse of Victor’s overall history and past with the Vision and the Avengers. The flashback really emphasizes that this isn’t something Victor is doing out of malice, but because he truly cares for Vision and his family. It also is good at showing that this situation has flat gone out of control.
We don’t get a whole bunch more than that this issue until the very end where Vin is able to break free of his Uncle’s grasp and shoot a beam from his mind gem to alert his parents. Vision and Virginia come barging into the home but it appears to be too late as the surprise catches Victor off guard and he accidently kills Vin. We end the issue with an ominous warning from our narrator stating “they (the Avengers) would finally understand why and how Vision ascended into madness.”
Other than the huge reveal towards the end of the issue of Vision’s family, there isn’t much more going on in these pages new from last issue. We’re provided a bit of backstory detailing Victor. This serves to fill in the gaps for anybody unaware of who he is, where he comes from, and why he was chosen for this mission and is effective in doing so. I still loved this issue and consider this one of Marvel’s strongest titles.
The art by Walta and colors by Bellaire compliment the tone and creepiness of the story perfectly. King pulls a rabbit out from his hat each issue and I know going in to expect it but still never see it coming. I love those surprises this book provides each month even if they’re never in a way that make you happy on the inside ... yet … or ever.
Bits and Pieces:
The Vision has become the family horror movie I need Marvel to make. It’s rare to find a book you’re able to enjoy month in and month out regardless of what the overall story in the issue tends to be. I love how King keeps us in a constant state of alert and I just have no idea what to expect next. Kudos goes to the entire creative team for staying sharp issue after issue and never wasting a page, a moment, or a panel in this series so far. My only complaint is I see issue 12 and the series ending way too soon.