Comic Book Review – The Terminator: Enemy of My Enemy #1

The Terminator: Enemy of My Enemy #1
Written by: Dan Jolley
Art by: Jamal Igle
Colors by: Moose Baumann

The 80’s were great days. Back then, you played outside until dark and listened for your mom to call out for dinner time. There were no cell phones, no Internet, and no DVR’s incubating your TV shows until you were ready to watch them. But there WERE killer robots, burned freaks with razors on their hands, and dudes in hockey masks waiting to kill us around every corner. Man, I sure miss the 80’s.

Terminator holds a very special place in my heart. Whether she was super cool or just misguided, my mom let my nine year-old self watch The Terminator when it first came out on VHS. Yes, I’m old, get over it. Of course, I had to cover my eyes at the nudity but otherwise I absorbed the action and brutality of the T-800 and was forever hooked on James Cameron’s vision of the future. I will admit, however, that the Terminator franchise in comic book form never grabbed me like the movies did. I’m not sure if it was the lack of Arnie in the flesh, the fact they usually felt cheap and outside of official cannon, or I just had too damn many Uncanny X-Men books to read, but I could just never get into them. But here I find in my inbox that Dark Horse is giving us new Terminator goodness, set in the 1985 era once again? Well, let’s take a read shall we?

The set up for T:EoME #1 is extremely reminiscent of the original movie. We get a quick introduction to our main character, Farrow Greene, a tough as nails ex CIA agent working as a private investigator or bounty hunter, it’s not completely clear yet. We then get repeat of the now classic and oft repeated scene of a teleporting naked T-800, watch him mow down another hapless overweight biker and steal all his stuff. We then shift to Farrow getting herself in the middle of the Terminator and a very Sarah Connor like situation as she takes on the machine and finds he’s much more than she bargained for. The final pages reveal there are more people aware of our robotic friend’s arrival than previously thought, setting up a larger mystery for Farrow in the issues to come.

Admittedly, this issue is a big light on dialog. There are several pages with very minimal character interaction but still do a fine job setting up the story and keeping the pace moving. Jolley seems to be deliberately crafting a story that Terminator fans can immediately relate to while brand new fans can pick up and follow without needing to know the entire back history. And even though I’d personally like to see the Cameron mythology dug up and built upon, it’s refreshing to see what basically boils down to an origin story. Igle’s art is serviceable, nothing incredibly intricate or detailed, but characters are distinguishable and everything is simple enough as it moves from panel to panel. I’m not entirely sure if his Terminator is supposed to look like Schwarzenegger though, he’s extremely bland in his facial features. The colors are very flat, nothing in the book pops out to me at all. I will give high marks to the cover art, it’s a total throwback to 80’s Marvel covers and I absolutely love the flavor text. The composition reminds me of an old Punisher cover. Thumbs up!

Back in the 80’s there weren’t many things more terrifying and intimidating than the relentless cold blooded mechanical killing machine that was the Terminator. So far, I’m not sure if the The Enemy of My Enemy is trying to capture that or put a new spin on the old tale, but I like the start and the fact it’s accessible to anyone. I’ll give it a few more reads to determine if “I’ll be back” or not. I’m sorry, you had to know that one was coming. Hasta la vista!

Score: 5 (out of 7) Every time I see a naked Terminator I can’t help but think how uncomfortable time travel must be.

What did you think about this issue? Let me know in the comments or shoot me a Tweet (@lanzajr26)

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