Thursday, June 10, 2010

1985 – Longshot miniseries

Longshot #1-6 
September 1985 - February 1986
Writer: Ann Nocenti
Artist(s): Art Adams/While Portacio

An alien, with no memories of who he is, escapes from a group of mysterious captors and finds himself on Earth. He can't escape his past and learns that he's actually a synthetic human created as part of a slave race for an evil tyrant, Mojo. He recalls memories of his creator and how he was meant to help his fellow slaves rebel against Mojo. With the help of his human allies, Longshot drives Mojo from Earth and then returns to the Mojoverse to continue the struggle against Mojo.

Ann Nocenti juggles a few well-worn story ideas and manages to pull it all off in a refreshing fashion. Issues #1 through 4 seem abruptly different from issues 5 and 6. The early issues are written in a less traditional fashion and focuses on Longshot's exposure to a variety of different examples of humanity. He meets and learns from a paranoid survivalist, a glamorous movie stunt woman, and from a down and out husband who is ready to commit suicide. In the last couple of issues, the story line takes on a more traditional comic book form featuring a climatic battle between Longshot and his nemesis Mojo.

If you enjoy Nocenti's writing in this series, check out her run on Daredevil where her writing is better developed and she takes a more serious look at a variety of social issues.

Oh, yeah, I almost forgot the art. :)

There's no much to say about the art except for wow! This series was Art Adams' first mainstream work and his art just got better and better with each issue. His intricate pencilled art really shined through in this series and set him up for work on a couple of the X-Men annuals as well as the New Mutants Special. Unfortunately, since Adams' style is so labour intensive, he could never keep up with the schedule that a monthly book would require.

Longshot's storyline would become intertwined with the X-Men as he would join the mutant team for awhile before returning to the Mojoverse and renewing his struggle against Mojo.

The group of kids Longshot befriended in issue #4 returned in the pages of Nocent’s Daredevil run.


4 comments:

  1. This was a great series, and I've always been struck by how removed it felt from the rest of the X-Men books, the whole Mojo business aside.

    Oh, and I totally agree about the art. I actually have a copy of the second issue signed by Art Adams!

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  2. is this in a trade? i've always meant to read it, love adams' art from this period.

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  3. I don't think it's been recently reprinted in a trade paperback format, but it's available in the Marvel Premiere Hardcover format at nearly the same price...

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  4. This was by far my favorite mini-series of the 80's. I absolutely loved the character of Longshot, but why in the world was he brought into the X-Men??? I would have loved to have seen a follow-up mini showing his return to his own world. I was highly disappointed when he was just brought in as another X-Men. Seriously, whose idea was that and what was the reasoning? Was he the first non-mutant X-Man?

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