Usually when I see that logo you expect pain and suffering. Let’s face it, Maximum Press’ version of Battlestar Galactica was, as the French say, crap. However, as we go into the two one-shots something strange occurs. Good stories. Well, relatively speaking at least. The weirdest part is the writer, Robert Napton. He wrote three of the four mini-series we’ve reviewed previously. However, Rob Liefeld is nowhere to be seen. The two stories here, the three-part main story and the one back-up, were originally presented in Maximum’s anthology title Asylum to promote the series. If only the other stories had been as good as the ones in here.

You were expecting an interesting cover? Haven't you been paying attention?

Battlestar Galactica: The Compendium

Maximum Press (February, 1997)

“BAPTISM OF FIRE” (three parts)
WRITER: Robert Napton
ARTIST (PART 1): John Fang
PENCILERS (PARTS 2 & 3): Richard Horie and Brian Denham (part 2 only)
INKER (PARTS 2 & 3): Rene Michelleti
COLORISTS: Dan Sheridan (part 1) and Scott Rockwell (parts 2 &3)
COLOR SEPARATIONS: Heroic Age (part 1) and Quantum Color (parts 2 & 3)
LETTERER: Kurt Hathaway (oddly listed only for 2 & 3 with no letterer credited for part 1)
WRITERS: Robert Napton & Scott Devine
ARTIST: Hector Gomez
LETTERER: Steve Dutro

The primary story deals with Adama remembering his early dealings with Cain. On their early days aboard the Cerberus (at the time the big shop every Warrior wanted to be assigned to), they took an instant dislike to each other and were competing for everything. When this started getting out of hand Commander Odysseus decides to send them on a mission to take out a Cylon base scanning array so that they can launch an attack. The two learn to work together and seem to form a friendship. The framing device is Adama (just after the events of the first episode) missing his younger days.

This would make a cool poster.

It’s a good story, which makes this the first time I have ever written these words about a Robert Napton-written Galactica story. I’m wondering if the lack of Liefeld involvement helped that. In the three mini-series (not counting the “filler” story written by Richard Hatch) Rob Liefeld is credited as coming up with the story while Napton wrote the script. Here it’s all him and maybe that’s the difference that helps the story. Even the layouts look better here than in the mini-serieses. (Is that a word?) While the panel above is the three panels above two pages, only take half a shot as it’s a good reveal of the Cerberus. There are no jagged panels when nothing is occurring. The pacing is far superior. The art, while still suffering from being a Maximum Press title and changing art teams between parts 1 & 2, is better. I also like the design of the early Vipers, perhaps even more than the Vipers from the time of the series.

"And pick up some donuts while you're out."

In the back-up story, which Napton co-writes with Scott Devine, We stick with the TV show time period (and I kind of wish the rest of the comics did) and what appears to be this continuity’s version of the origin of Cy (or Cyrus) the Cylon, a Cylon who develops emotions and a personality. Fans will remember him from the Galactica: 1980 episode “The Return of Starbuck“. Fans tend to hate this spin-off but love the episode and since Liefeld’s Galactica ignores the 1980 version I guess someone felt the need to bring Cyrus here. It ends on a cliffhanger, but maybe it continues in the Starbuck miniseries. We’ll find out when I get to that. Otherwise, the story feels unnecessary.

The oversized eye still looks bad, but at least he doesn't have veins in his arms, for frak's sake.

Overall this was actually a good story and proof that Liefeld was the one screwing everything up. However, this is only one comic. Join us tomorrow where we look at the OTHER one-shot comic and see if the trend continues.


About ShadowWing Tronix

A would be comic writer looking to organize his living space as well as his thoughts. So I have a blog for each goal. :)

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