Powers #2: Roleplay
by Brian Michael Bendis,
Michael Avon Oeming
(Image, 2001)

In a world where wearing a superhero costume can get you attacked or killed without warning, it makes sense that the costumes have been banned for anyone without actual powers to defend themselves with.

So there's already been a crime committed when detectives Christian Walker and Deena Pilgrim find a group of college students who'd been gallivanting around campus in a superhero roleplaying game. Of course, the seriousness of the crime is heightened when most of the students are found dead.

Bodies are discovered in a brief, rapid-fire sequence, beginning with the most disturbing discovery of all -- a kid dressed up as defunct hero Diamond, which was Walker's costumed identity before he lost his super abilities.

Another stand-alone story arc in the Powers series, Roleplay is a riveting peek into the role of a no-frills cop in a world where superheroes fly above them. Drawn in an exaggerated comic-book style by Michael Avon Oeming, the story is dark and ominous throughout. Meanwhile, writer Brian Michael Bendis keeps readers guessing as the clues in the case come to light.

This is another series I'll enjoy following as long as its creative team stays this fresh and original.

by Tom Knapp
17 February 2007

Buy it from Amazon.com.