Rocket Raccoon written & illustrated by Skottie Young. Colors by Jean-Francois Beaulieu.
Ok, so over the summer Marvel Studios released a little movie called GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY. You may have heard of it? It’s the big-screen adaption of the Marvel comic of the same name, which to be honest I have not read in a long time. However it features a character called Rocket Raccoon (or just Rocket), and guess what? Rocket Raccoon now has his own monthly title!
Honestly, when I first heard they were doing a Rocket Raccoon monthly, I was skeptical. The last time I remember him having his own series it was a small mini-series with a then unknown Mike Mignola on art. I actually liked that series, but it was ages ago and the character didn’t feel particularly leading-man worthy. However, I then heard that Skottie Young was going to be doing the artwork, and that piqued my interest quite a bit.
Original Marvel Four-Issue Limited Series
Skottie Young is probably best known for his artwork on the Marvel adaptations of the OZ books (as in the Wonderful Wizard, not the HBO series), and of course for doing a TON of variant covers for Marvel featuring kid versions of Marvel characters which are whimsical and Seussian (not that Seussian is a real word, but tough). Young definitely is a favorite artist of mine, so the idea of him drawing a raccoon carrying around huge guns certainly sounded interesting…. and it is!
Young draws in a crazy cartoonish style, which I think is fantastic. It definitely makes Rocket Raccoon visually different than any Marvel title, and frankly pretty different that 99% of the books out there. His artwork is aided and abetted by the colors of Jean-Francois Beaulieu, which is just a lovely and colorful palette that makes it even more enjoyable to view. I could gush about the artwork all day, but what about the writing? How is Skottie Young as a writer?
Quite good actually.
Two issues in and things have moved along fairly quickly. Rocket is being framed for murders he actually didn’t commit (as opposed to murders which he is happy to take credit for.. in the name of justice) by someone who may (or may not) be another member of Rocket’s lost race. Of course it doesn’t help his case that he is constantly telling people he’s the last of his kind. So he’s trying to clear his name and also dealing with other people trying to kill him… and by ‘other people’ I mean a small army with a personal stake in killing off our hero (you’ll have to read it to find out the reason they want him dead. No spoilers here folks!). Fortunately Rocket has his trusty … well, he’s not really a sidekick, but ‘trusted aide’ perhaps? Who is he? Well..
Yes, Groot is along for the ride.
This is another in a line of really FUN Marvel Comics (others would be She-Hulk, Ms. Marvel, and Captain Marvel) with gorgeous art and a humorous, entertaining story. It doesn’t feel like a super-hero comic, which is appropriate…. Rocket isn’t really a superhero. It’s more of an adventure/sci-fi/buddy-comedy. If you enjoyed the humor of the GOTG movie, I think you’ll really enjoy the comic, and right now there are only two issues out, so it’s a good time to jump on board.