Dial H 1: Into You

dial h volume 1 into you cover trade paperback tpb
5.0 Overall Score
Story: 5/10
Art: 5/10

Dial H #6

The tone of the comic doesn't work with the plot

Comic Info

Comic Name:  Dial H

Publisher:  DC Comics

Writer:  China Miéville

Artist:  Mateus Santolouco/David Lapham/Riccardo Burchielli

# of Issues:  7

Release Date:  2013


Dial H #2

Reprints Dial H #0-6 (July 2012-January 2013).  Nelson Jent is overweight and unhealthy.  When he discovers a magic dial that gives him superpowers, it appears that everything is going his way…but having powers isn’t easy.  Nelson finds himself hunted for the dial and unable to control it.  As a threat to the world surfaces, Nelson must stop it…even if he doesn’t know how.

Written by novelist China Miéville and illustrated by Mateus Santolouco (with additional art from David Lapham and Riccardo Burchielli), Dial H Volume 1:  Into You was part of the second wave of New 52 titles though the series mostly remained independent of the DC Universe.  The collection presents the stories as #1-6 and then #0, but the actual release order was #1-4, #0, and #5-6.

The original Dial H for Hero was a weird concept comic book that never really seemed to connect.  The idea was that the magical dial made the everyman (or in the case of the original series the everyboy) a superhero.  First appearing in House of Mystery (1) #156 (January 1966), Robbie Reed used the dial to frequently transform into ridiculous superheroes that just happened to be exactly what was needed to stop the criminals.  Here China Miéville plays with that formula, but like before, I don’t feel it really connected.


Dial H #6

The story for the primary arc of this collection is too convoluted.  Dial H for Hero was a fun little comic that wasn’t too heavy.  Nelson Jent is supposed to be a fun character, but the danger he is fighting is real and dark.  The story as a result comes off as quite generic and uninspiring.  That doesn’t mean that the whole collection doesn’t have some merit.

I do commend Dial H #6 (January 2013) which really does feel like a throwback to the earlier series.  The issue is illustrated by David Lapham and has Nelson transformed into a giant stereotypical Native American named Chief Mighty Arrow.  Due to the offensive nature of the character, Nelson isn’t allowed out in public until the effect of the dial wears off.  It is original and reflects back to some of Robbie’s less than politically correct transformations (plus comic books in general).  It is fun and different and I wish that more of the series was like this issue.

Dial H 1:  Into You isn’t very good.  The story feels generic and undercooked.  I like some of what China Miéville is doing, but it just doesn’t work.  Dial H was already struggling at this point to find an audience and the series was soon cancelled.  Dial H 1:  Into You was followed by the final volume of the series Dial H 2:  Exchange.

Related Links:

Dial H 2:  Exchange

Showcase Presents:  Dial H for Hero

Author: JPRoscoe View all posts by
Follow me on Twitter/Instagram/Letterboxd @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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