REVIEW: ‘The Juggernaut,’ Issue #1

Reading Time: 3 minutes

The Juggernaut #1

The Juggernaut #1 is published by Marvel Comics, written by Fabian Nicieza, with art by Ron Garney, colors by Matt Milla and letters by Joe Sabino. With a lifetime of destruction behind him, perhaps it’s time Cain Marko finds something to help build, instead of destroying. After a chance run-in with a homeless teen brings out a sympathetic side to The Juggernaut, maybe Marko can take the opportunity to be a different kind of force in the world.

The character of The Juggernaut is often oversimplified. Being reduced to half a mental step up from a mindless engine of destruction, Marko is rarely given credit for being anything more than that. Given the years of abuse he suffered at the hands of his father, it is understandable why Marko often takes his power too far. He’s been hurt and powerless. He has no intention of being so again. The Juggernaut #1 looks to elevate it’s title character beyond the normal. And I have high hopes for just how far Marko can go.

The very first thing that caught my eye about The Juggernaut #1 is its writer. Nicieza is one of my all-time favorite X-scribes. Having worked on several of my favorite X-related runs, not the least of which is the criminally under-appreciated Gambit series, his work back in the 90s to elevate Gambit from more than a roguish thief, and into a deep three-dimensional character gives me high expectations for what he can do with an often equally underutilized character like Juggernaut. So far, so good.

As The Juggernaut #1 opens, we find Marko working with Damage Control. Using his particular gifts to demolish structurally unsound buildings is a nice fit. It puts Marko in a space where he isn’t being bad but still doing what he does.

While on the job, he and his supervisors have a run-in with some local homeless people who are squatting in the neighborhood they are bringing down. When one exhibits potent superpowers, Marko decides to reach out to the individual.

This initial attempt suffers from some serious setbacks. But, as all X-fans know, you can’t stop the Juggernaut. Nicieza’s portrayal of Marko as he fumbles with trying to help this young person is handled beautifully. Marko comes across as sincere, and well-intentioned, but utterly lost as well. He isn’t his stepbrother, and mentoring certainly doesn’t come naturally to him.

This sincerity that forms the heart of The Juggernaut #1 is further enhanced by Garney’s art. Marko struggles are written in both his face, as well as his body langue. The power and confidence Marko usually exudes are absent from this book. He’s lost and searching here. Maybe while he helps this teen find their place, he can find his as well.

Furthering the art’s presentation is Milla’s colors. While lots of darker shades are utilized here, augmenting the heavy tones of the story, there are a few points of truly vibrant color as well. Particularly when the homeless teen utilizes their powers. This creates a striking visual that serves to highlight metaphorically how the individual may prove to be a bright spot for Marko himself.

Finishing off the presentation is Sabino’s lettering. The job here is a solid display of clarity and skill. Sabino delivers the narrative in a way that feels harmonious with the art.

When all is said and done The Juggernaut #1 starts it’s the story off on the right foot. It gives an often one-dimensional character a greater depth than is generally shone. I hope Nicieza and the company can continue to build the narrative from here.

The Juggernaut #1 is available on September 23rd wherever comics are sold.

rating: 4/5

‘The Juggernaut,’ Issue #1
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TL;DR

When all is said and done The Juggernaut #1 starts it’s the story off on the right foot. It gives an often one-dimensional character a greater depth than is generally shone. I hope Nicieza and the company can continue to build the narrative from here.