Marvel may be just beginning their incursion into digital-first comics with Immortal Iron Fists, but DC is still clearly the king. Aside from current digital-first books Injustice 2 and Bombshells, today is the release of the first part of Gotham City Garage, a mix of DC’s superheroines, motorcycles, and Mad Max. And it is super fun.
Much like Bombshells, Gotham City Garage is an Elseworlds-story, a book set in a completely different universe to the main DC universe. However, unlike Bombshells, which is set during a slightly-more-female-oriented World War II, Gotham City Garage is set in a post-apocalyptic Mad Max-style wasteland where Gotham (or “the Garden”) is the Last City on Earth.
Writers Collin Kelly and Jackson Lanzing (who wrote the acclaimed Joyride) don’t waste a lot of time on exposition — we immediately learn how things work in the Garden, where everyone is equipped with a “Ridealong,” a device implanted in their head that makes sure that nobody is ever angry, sad, or unhappy. And Kara Gordon just happens to be one of the Ridealong technicians and the only person in the entire Garden immune from the Ridealong.
It’s this small act of defiance — helping someone whose Ridealong has malfunctioned — that informs the police that her Ridealong doesn’t work. Fortunately, her father just happens to be Commissioner Gordon and he knows what’s up.
In just a few pages and with just a few words, Kelly and Lanzing make us sympathetic to both Kara and her father, who sacrifices everything for her. And artist Brian Ching — who was the regular artist for the current Supergirl run — makes each page dynamic and each action have weight.
I especially love moments like these when objects move outside of the frame — something regular comics can definitely do, but which ends up looking a hell of a lot more dynamic in a digital comic like this, where it seems as if the action is breaking into other parts of the screen.
Since her father’s last words to her were “Find the sun,” Kara ends up breaking out of the dome...and the moment, in artist Brian Ching’s hands, becomes something joyous.
The issue ends on a cliffhanger, of course, as the police surround Kara, but it looks like she may be making some friends in the future: