Epic Beards of Review: Versus. #1

Buddy Beaudoin and Andrew Meigel
Meibuddy Comics

Not that I’ll ever deny it, but there are times a-plenty when I get barbs thrown my way for being a nerd—but then, I’m thirty-five. Of course, the main protagonist of Versus. may have been around that age when cartoons like G.I.Joe and Transformers were actually on the air, it’s no wonder his co-workers are giving Engel a hard time.

versus coverThere’s something to be said for Buddy Beaudoin and Andrew Meigel (Meibuddy Comics) and their approach to this inaugural issue: their fascination of the 80s not only encompasses Saturday morning madness, but also sizzles with a Labyrinth poster on a bedroom wall and a panel-by-panel Simple Minds tribute. Versus. is destined for greatness, but throwing in Patrick Swayze was a nice touch.

Our hero Engel is a cop with the Metro County Police and is soon embroiled in some pretty heavy (“There’s that word again.” –Dr. Emmett Brown) shenanigans by some super-shady thugs. We’re as yet unclear as to what’s happening, but I’m betting Superpara Industries where “Science is the New Religion” may have something to do with said malarchy.

Meigel has some pretty fantastic art reminiscent of Ted McKeever and fills the panels up with some crazy eighties fare. Panels and pacing are pretty perky and breaks things up nicely with full-page and smaller story elements. Colors and shading make it hard to remember this is an indie title. Versus. has got a trippy, heady cover with a glimpse into something melding James Bond with TheMatrix.

They’ve chosen wisely with publisher KA-BLAM, and though this is my first experience with their product, I’d highly recommend them upon seeing the outcome.

In addition to twenty-five great pages, there’re a few with some sketches for future issues. There’s even a nice map of the Metro County Public Transit with some nice nods to comic greatness past and present. Whether or not this is a story akin to the likes of Fringe or Lost (or something much deeper) it’s still too early to tell, but I’m anxious to see where Versus. is headed.

As one prone to reading comics over and over again, I’ll have to order another myself considering there’s a fingerprint marring the front cover.Versus . is available at Aquilonia Comics in Troy, NY, Fuzz Recordshop in Albany, NY, or directly plus shipping at versusthecomic@gmail.com.  Versus. #2 will be available Fall/Winter 2013.