Top 10: The Forty-Niners

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7.5 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Art: 7/10

Still a fun comic

Would rather have another regular Top 10 series

 
Comic Info

Comic Name:  Top 10:  The Forty-Niners

Publisher:  America’s Best Comics

Writer:  Alan Moore

Artist:  Gene Ha

Release Date:  2005

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Wrap-Around Cover

Welcome to Neopolis…a city which has been selected to house the world’s superhumans.  The bugs and glitches of Neopolis are worked out as the streets flood with people possessing powers, Leni Muller (aka Sky Witch) and Steve Traynor (aka Jetlad) find themselves as new inhabitants.  Leni explores her options among the superhuman police force, and Steve continues to work with planes.  With a city of superhumans, there are bound to be troubles and Steve and Leni find themselves caught up in preventing a tragedy.

Written by Alan Moore, Top 10:  The Forty-Niners is a prequel to Alan Moore’s series.  The America’s Best Comic was a branch of WildStorm and eventually folded into DC Comics.  The one-shot book length feature introduces some of the character who play prominent roles in the original comic.

Top 10:  The Forty-Niners shows a change from the original series.  The original Top 10 had lots and lots of characters and took the approach of a Robert Altman film…it gave you little glimpses into the characters to slowly give you the bigger picture.  With Top 10:  The Forty-Niners, you get more of a character study with fewer players.

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The ’49ers are here!

The series is more streamlined by only focusing on Leni Muller and Steve Traynor and doesn’t lend itself to the fun that was Top 10.  Muller finds herself adjusting to police life while Traynor is coming to terms with his homosexuality.  There is a crime involved, but it isn’t very interesting.  I liked the format of Top 10 which had lots of officers, lots of storylines, and fun little subplots.  Top 10 really built to something…it doesn’t feel that way in The Forty-Niners.

The art is solid, but once again, not up to Top 10Top 10 was a great in that you could spend a long time looking at the pictures.  The book was loaded with references to other comics, sci-fi, and movies.  Top 10:  The Forty-Niners has a little of this, but not enough to keep you coming back for more looks.

Top 10 was my favorite America’s Best Comic but Top 10:  The Forty-Niners wasn’t my favorite book.  With so many rich characters in Top 10, I would have preferred to just have another Top 10 series or a one-shot to follow-up Top 10’s first series…that eventually did happen in the form of Top 10:  Beyond the Farthest Precinct, but that series wasn’t written by Alan Moore.

Related Links:

Top Ten—Book 1

Top Ten—Book 2

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Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter @JPRoscoe76! Loves all things pop-culture especially if it has a bit of a counter-culture twist. Plays video games (basically from the start when a neighbor brought home an Atari 2600), comic loving (for almost 30 years), and a true critic of movies. Enjoys the art house but also isn't afraid to let in one or two popular movies at the same time.

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