Death-Rattler #1 by Kelly Bender and Ryan Downing is a new comic from Insane Comics. Reminiscent of old Image Comics (back when that company first began,) here we have the overly-buxom women wearing little-to-nothing (though conveniently barely-covered in the right places to avoid outright nudity), the villains that look decidedly villainous, and a story built around action with lots of mature situations.
That being said, Death Rattler #1 is not overly impressive. Certainly it is a labor of love by the creators, as is apparent by the high quality of the book. However, the script could use a little more revision. There were a few points where the dialogue was a bit repetitive. In the comic format, where you only have so much space for the text, being succinct is important. One character in particular however, did benefit from the writing style, and that was the sheriff, with whom readers will sense a unique voice for him.
One of the selling points of Death-Rattler is that it’s a super science western and it really takes a back seat to the rest of the story. Only having read issue #1 so far, it reads and feels more like a traditional western and the tech, when it does get used or shown, is more of an afterthought than an intrinsic part of the world.
The art, a decidedly strong point of Death-Rattler, as mentioned before is much like the early days of Image Comics. The anatomy is exaggerated, not just in the women’s (ahem) attributes, but also in the general comics style of today. Main characters are lovingly drawn and detailed, while the supporting cast is more caricature. This is not a put-down about the art style though. This style is common and again, space is at a premium in a twenty four page book. Denoting the expendable extras from the recurring or main characters is necessary.
Overall, Death-Rattler #1 has some strong and weak points for sure. It remains to be seen if issue #2 improves or not. However, at the close of the first issue, it lacks a strong hook or desire for wanting to read the next chapter.