I’ve been reading the comic book series, The Illegitimates from Saturday Night Live’s Taran Killam and The Illegitimates #3 was just released yesterday. I’ve been critical of this series so far because the story has been moving along too slowly for a series that is only set to be 6 issues long. With issue #3, we are finally starting to get some movement.
Let me give my regular disclaimer here in case by some long shot, there is an actual comic book aficionado here reading this review. It’s been a long time since I’ve read comic books (I discovered girls) but I started reading this series because I’m a big fan of Taran Killam. I might not know all the technical details of comics (if there are any). I’m just here to give one dude from Chicago’s opinion on this so here it is.
We are now 1/2 way through the first run of this series and what do we know? We know that ace spy Jack Steele has a bunch of illegitimate kids that he fathered all around the world. We know that those kids each have special abilities like their father. We know that bad guy Viktor Dannikor has an evil plot underway. We know that the kids are probably the only ones who can stop whatever his plot is. That is basically where we are.
The Illegitimates #3 moves the story along a bit further than issues #1 and #2, if ever so slightly. My concern with the pacing of The Illegitimates is that I feel they are going to run out of time and they will do something trite and simple to resolve the conflict or, even worse, they will give us a to be continued after the end of the 6th installment. Given how this story has been doled out in tiny bits and pieces over the first 3 installments, I don’t see how we are going to get to a satisfactory resolution in the next 3 installments.
While I may be concerned about the story arc and how things are progressing, I have been very impressed with the art work in The Illegitimates. You don’t have to be a comic book fan to know that there are several people involved in making comic book art. Anyone who has seen Chasing Amy knows that there are ink artists and there are pencil artists. On The Illegitimates, there are 4 artists working to create this visually appealing comic series. Kevin Sharpe (who’s previously done work for Resident Evil) does the pencils, Diana Greenhalgh does the ink for the series. You can see some of her process here. Peter Pantazis (who’s worked on The Justice League) does the colors and Thom Zahler does the lettering. All four work together to create work that even on an iPad looks amazing.
Artwork from The Illegitimates #3
The quality of the artwork feels to me less like a comic book and more like a graphic novel along the lines of the Watchmen, which I guess isn’t too surprising since that is a DC Comics release and the artists on The Illegitimates have all done work on DC Comic properties.
Overall I think The Illegitimates #3 is the best yet in this series. I am hopeful that Taran Killam and writing partner Marc Andreyko will continue to build on the improvements of this issue for the remaining 3 issues. The next issue is really going to be crucial for the series. There has to be some real movement in the story or I think one of the previously mentioned scenarios becomes more likely to play out in the end.