Ex Machina 1: The First Hundred Days

ex machina volume 1 the first hundred days cover trade paperback tpb
8.0 Overall Score
Story: 8/10
Art: 8/10

Great concept, interesting characters

Wrap-ups up the storyline for the volume too quickly

Comic Info

Comic Name:  Ex Machina

Publisher:  DC/Wildstorm

Writer:  Brian K. Vaughan

Artist:  Tony Harris

# of Issues:  5

Release Date:  2005


Ex Machina #1

Reprints Ex Machina #1-5 (August 2004-December 2004).  The mayor of New York City faces tons of challenges as part of running one of the biggest cities on Earth and has to deal with problems from snow plow drivers to controversial art.  New York City however picked a hero…literally.  Mitchell Hundred was previously known as The Great Machine, but now The Great Machine is running the Big Apple.  Mitchell is finding that being a superhero might have been easier than being a mayor.

Written by Brian K. Vaughan and illustrated by Tony Harris, Ex Machine Volume 1:  The First Hundred Days collects the first issue and the four issue storyline “State of Emergency” of the award winning comic. The issues in this collection were also collected as part of Ex Machina Deluxe Edition—Book 1.

Brian K. Vaughn is a solid writer, and I loved his run on Y—The Last Man.  I picked up the whole Ex Machina series for cheap and finally got around to reading it…and enjoyed it.  With a realistic take the comic has a Powers/Top Ten type feel for politics…and endless potential.


Ex Machina #2

Despite the great set-up, I felt that this first storyline had a bit of letdown to it.  I liked the Lincoln/art storyline within the story, but I felt that the snow plow driver storyline ended both abruptly and as a letdown.  The kid killing drivers to stop school during a blizzard obviously has mental problems, but it almost felt like a twist ending without really exploring the mental problems…which is half the story and not a one or two page wrap-up.

The art for the comic is good.  Tony Harris’ art is good, but Harris has never been a flashy artist.  With this and his work on Starman, he does a much better job on “real” superheroes and characters so Ex Machina was a good for him.  Could the art for the series be more distinctive?  Yes, but it does not need to be for how the story is told.

Ex Machina 1:  The First Hundred Days demonstrates a comic with potential.  I think that the volume is interesting, introduces great idea, has unique characters, and a different approach and look at superheroes in a post 9-11 world.  The series does have some problems, but I think Vaughan is the type of writer who can rectify what few issues I have with the comic.  I look forward to reading more of the series.  Ex Machina 1:  The First Hundred Days was followed by Ex Machina 2:  Tag.

Related Links:

Ex Machina 2:  Tag

Ex Machina 3:  Fact v. Fiction

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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