Wrestling fans and comic book readers rejoice, as the eagerly anticipated WWE Superstars comic has finally hit shelves. Written by best-selling author Mick Foley and with artwork by Alitha Martinez, Super Genius' first ever published comic is set to impress readers of all ages. The story begins in Titan City, and we follow the journey of three main wrestlers, John Cena, Randy Orton and CM Punk. Cena has been wrongly accused for a crime he did not commit, Orton is on a quest of city-wide domination and CM Punk is aiming to bring the whole 'corrupt system' of Titan City crashing down. WWE Superstars begins with the 'underdog' John Cena behind bars, with Triple H questioning him about a missing 'Money in the Bank' briefcase, which instead of retaining a contract, it holds the ridiculous amount of $10,000,000,000. It's the main hook for this four-issue arc, which goes on to introduce the 'Viper' Randy Orton, who is being harassed by the only honest cop in town, Captain Christian. CM Punk is later introduced on the third page of the comic in the Undertaker's tattoo parlour, which is aptly named 'The Funeral Parlor'. Punk is trying to assemble a rally to win back the city, and he's apparently willing to ask anyone. The Undertaker and Punk exchange a few brief words, putting aside that whole feud they had leading up to Wrestlemania 29 (apparently it's pretty easy to forgive someone who once covered you in your dead manager's ashes). After that, the stage is set and the mystery thriller truly begins. Foley does a pretty decent job introducing the main players in the comic in the beginning, and it's worth noting that he doesn't necessarily treat the reader like a complete simpleton, which is a welcome change in comics. Captions and conversations are clearly used as exposition, but it still flows pretty nicely. The characterisation is obviously there and it's spot on throughout. Having three different superstars in the spotlight makes a lot of sense, too. If fans aren't particularly too keen on John Cena, at least they still have Punk, and the same can be said for Orton. There's something for all kinds of fans here, and that appears to be the case with future issues also (future releases include Sheamus, Kane and for some reason Hornswoggle...). Almost everyone in the roster is included throughout the first issue too, including Camacho and Hunico who are acting as hired goons, and even the despicable Bella Twins who make a brief appearance. Wrestlers in Titan City fight against enemies with their very own wrestling moves, and brawls are finished when a wrestler executes his/her finisher, which is a nice little touch. It's delightfully cheesy, but great fun nonetheless. It's a pleasure to see really, as the creators of the comic are aware that ridiculous superpowers don't need to be tacked on to make an interesting read, allowing wrestlersto utilise their own strengths to overcome the odds. The sheer concept is perfect, setting all these wrestlers in a comic book thriller. It's not been done before, so it's new and exciting territory for fans. The artist Alitha Martinez does a pretty decent job of capturing wrestler's likeness, and the artwork is pretty much faultless throughout the entire issue. Admittedly, it can vary from being well detailed to being a little too simplistic, but it's a decent and welcome change to previous WWE comics, which haven't really accomplished the simple of task of making the wrestlers distinguishable (see WWE Heroes). Fans were rightfully apprehensive about the artwork when the news announcement about WWE Superstars hit, but if the creators of the comic can get artists like Alitha Martinez throughout the run, then we're in good hands. A nice colourful approach to the comic makes a big difference. It could have easily been rubbish. WWE Superstars is a fun little read, and it's a great new beginning for a WWE comics. Getting Mick Foley as the writer was a perfect choice, as he knows character's motivations and mannerisms. He's placed superstars in a world that doesn't require the involvement of fantasy elements, and he's placed wrestlers in a universe that has a distinctly noir feel to it. Ultimately, he knows what wrestling is all about, and he encapsulates all of the fun and excitement of wrestling into 20 colourful pages. Don't be mistaken though, it's not going to win any awards. It isn't particularly ground-breaking or Eisner award winning, but it's a decent little read, which the fans rightfully deserve. The writing and art alone is a winning combination and the variant covers are undoubtedly gorgeous. The homages to old Marvel covers are a nice touch, especially considering they've slapped CM Punk on a classic Fantastic Four 'Thing' cover, which is just perfect. After this arc is finished, WWE Superstars will be moving forwards with an action/comedy story, which promises even more wrestling action. There's even a special graphic novel coming out soon, which is apparently for the 'true WWE fans'. All in all, it's a damn fine start to the series, which will hopefully include some entertaining stories in the future. Here's to the next issue, and let's hope it includes a decent fight sequence between Daniel Bryan and Orton. There may even be some Vintage Orton in there, too.
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