The Resistance: Uprising #1 Review

by Nick Devonald on April 06, 2021

Writer: J. Michael Straczynski
Artist: C.P. Smith
Colours: Snakebite Cortez

The resistance: Uprising picks up the pieces immediately after the conclusion of The Resistance, and Lisa’s murder. Lisa was a prominent figure in the resistance and her loss is felt keenly by all. Her unique powers gave her the power to unite everyone with powers in the perfect way. Without her our heroes face a challenge of communicating with each other. A big part of this issue revolves around dealing with her loss and figuring out the next step for the resistance.

Where the first mini-series at times felt quite sprawling, which was necessary to allow readers to see the global impact of the virus and the survivors developing powers, this issue is much more focused. The cast has been established, the overarching plot introduced, which lets this issue get on with the job of telling the next chapter. And now that the pacing has slowed down it allows time to shine the spotlight on characters who have previously not been explored in too much depth. The first mini-series had an important role to play, introducing the world and players for the grand tale being told here, but this issue is much stronger for spending time with the central characters. None of that is to say the story is any smaller in scope. This is still a global story being told, with different players all over the world with roles to play. The difference being, now that the players have been introduced and the background to the story established, we get to just enjoy the story that is unfolding.

J. Michael Straczynski has established an interesting cast of characters, and since its such early days in this massive, shared superhero universe there is plenty of potential for the series, and where the characters go. They all have their own stories to tell and he begins to flesh their backgrounds out in more detail over the course of this issue. Then there’s the virus itself, in many ways as much a character as the rest of the cast. In so many narratives the virus would just be a means to an end, but not here. The mystery of its origins, the way it reacts, it’s clear something else is behind it, manipulating things. When it was explored in more depth in the first series it was quite sinister. There is now even more menace behind it. This enigma around this world changing event is waiting to unfold, and it casts shade over the reborns. Are they in turn also being manipulated?

For this second mini-series C.P. Smith takes over the artistic reigns, his unique style the perfect fit to take over from Mike Deodato. He brings a realism to the series, one of the many ways that this universe distinguishes itself from the typical superhero fare. Each page looks stunning, the backgrounds so detailed, yet the focus always remains on the characters who each feel and look real. It's very stylised yet manages to retain that sense of realism throughout. Joining Smith is frequent collaborater Snakebite Cortez, who’s colours are a perfect pairing for Smith. Cortez does a fantastic job with lighting the scene, something that is all too often overlooked by colourists. It’s a little detail which really adds to the realism, and looks incredible.

Last years The Resistance did an excellent job of introducing Straczynski’s superhero universe, and this first issue really begins to develop the characters and the story, still keeping the global stakes but making the stories feel more personal. One of AWA’s flagship stories, with such an excellent creative team and the scope for some truly epic stories amongst the excellent worldbuilding, readers owe it to themselves to pick this comic up.

Our Score:


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