Battlecats Volume 1 TPB Review
Creator Writer Mark London
Artist Issues 1,2,3,4 Andy King
Artist Issue 5 Michael Camelo
Colorist Issues 1,2,3 Alejandro Giraldo
Colorist Issues 4,5 Julian Gonzalez
Book Designer and Letterer Miguel Zapata
Editor in Chief Giovanna T. Orozco
Assistant Editor Brian Hawkins
Assistant Colorist Jonathan Prada
Let me start by saying this art is just fantastic. The Battlecats design passes the originality or silhouette test, even with the similar styled characters, and the writers give them very different personalities to really cap off their singularity. The line work, from the pencils to the inks, is done very crisp and clean, every prominent line is well defined. I’m sure if someone looked hard enough they could find a flaw but I can say for sure that I marveled at every page and that goes for both artists King and Camelo. Another aspect of the fantasticness that is the art is of course the colors. A lot of the tones are a greyish blue, almost muted tone, but it shifts to a more orange or lighter blue look when the situation of the storyline calls for it. In other words the colors are very versatile and assist in telling the story. Again, multiple artists staying within each others realm of talent to be consistent and keep the quality of work at a high level. Giraldo and Gonzalez seem to be a great pair and work really well with each other.
Keeping a creative team that spans two artists and colorists over five issues and maintaining the quality of work can’t be easy at all so I have to give credit to the editor in chief, assistant editor, and assistant colorist. Orozco, Hawkins, and Prada, respectively. Keeping a creative team on the coarse charted can’t always be easy, and as I said, especially with several different artists. The consistency in this book is a true testament to the dedication EIC Orozco shows and the clear discipline of Hawkins to assist seeing that through. I also mention the assistant colorist because of the fact the colorists change but the style doesn’t. I can’t imagine being a colorist or artist that is trying to match a style so having someone around to assist and answer questions must be a life saver. Editing is often times overlooked so in this case I feel this entire creative team, editor’s included, deserve major praise.
Battlecats is set in a fantasy world similar to other fantasy books except all of the inhabitants are cats. It’s a good old “swords and sorcery” story with anthropomorphic cats running around wrecking shop. I’m sort of a sucker for anthropomorphic characters as well as fantasy so I was pretty much hooked right off the bat. I think what stands out with the writing is the clearly defined cast of character personalities. Each character is well defined in look and feel and I think a lot of that is due to the writing. The team consists of five different characters and as I said each one is unique; a smart goal oriented leader, a brutish sword master, a smart mouth, and a thoughtful and smart wizard, every sort of personality is represented in the group and consistent with a well balanced fantasy story. My plan was to just read the first issue of the trade but I feel like the action and story both move the book along so before I knew it I was into the third issue just reading away. If there ever was a sign of a good comic it would be the inability to put it down and for me Battlecats was a page turner.