Comic Review – Insufferable On the Road #1

  • Writers: Mark Waid & Peter Krause
  • Artist: Peter Krause
  • Colorist: Nolan Woodard
  • Letter: Troy Peteri
  • Publisher: IDW
  • Release Date: February 10, 2016

Writer Mark Waid and artist Peter Krause’s take their Insufferable series to the Cayman Islands on the trail of the embezzler of Galahad’s fortune in Insufferable On the Road #1 published by IDW.

Insufferable: On the Road is the second arc of the series.  It was originally published in 2013 through the digital comic site Thrillbent, a creation of Mark Waid and television writer/producer John Rodger. In the series, Nocturnus and Galahad are a father and son crime fighting team defending the city of St. Barrington. Over the years, Galahad’s contempt for his father treating him like a child grew until it finally exploded in a public argument with Galahad unmasking himself thereby exposing both their alter egos.  Nocturnus went underground after setting fire to his estate and headquarters. Galahad embraced the spotlight and took to product endorsements and posting on social media to boost his public image. Galahad may act like a party animal and narcissist, but underneath that devil-may-care persona is a young boy who has always wanted his father’s acceptance and approval.  With his public assets embezzled by his trusted business manager, Galahad must work with his father to regain his fortune.

Insufferable On The Road Cover by Peter Krause
Insufferable On The Road Cover by Peter Krause

Although frustrated with Galahad’s careless public behavior, Nocturnus has not completely given up on his son. Nocturnus travels with Galahad and Meg Pollilo, their publicist, to the Cayman Islands.  Nocturnus is impatient to stay on the trail of Galahad’s stolen fortune. To help prop up Galahad’s damaged ego and get some cash flowing again, Meg secures him a job at a Cayman resort beach party as the celebrity endorser of Captain Polly, the rum-flavored malt beverage.

I have often wondered how many more super-heroes comic books an already crowded comic book market place can support.  Insufferable is proof there is always room for one more super-hero themed comic. Creators Mark Waid and Peter Krause have discovered the secret sauce to a fresh approach for a partners-in-crime-fighting comic book.  What makes Insufferable different from other super hero comics is the relationship between Nocturnus and Galahad. It’s more than a story of the contempt a son has for a father for not being treated as an adult; it is also about the lack of trust between them. Could they be on the road to rebuilding that relationship of trust and learning to work together as equals?

Waid brings new readers up to speed in just six panels with the help of Krause and Woodard’s art.  Laugh out loud moments in the first issue include Galahad’s reaction to the terms of his product endorsement contract and some of the many quips made by characters. Through complex character relationships and dialogue Mark Waid proves he is a masterful script writer and great wit.

Waid worked previously with artist and co-writer Peter Krause on Irredeemable for Boom Studios. Together with colorist Nolan Woodard, Insufferable On the Road #1 maintains the same level of high quality art as the rest the series. This issue was first published digitally. The panel layout was designed in 4×3 landscape mode for easier reading on tablet devices. I‘ve read Insufferable in both print and digital format. It does make for a more enjoyable reading experience on a tablet and works just as well for in print. Other than noticing the uniformity of the layout of the story panels in print, it did not impede my enjoyment of the comic. This is a testament to how well the format works for both print and digital media when used effectively.

If you have never read Waid and Krause’s Insufferable, this issue is a great jumping on point.

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About the author

Christopher Calloway

Christopher Calloway is the small press and idependent comic creator editor for Word of the Nerd. He is long-time comic book reader and collector who is passionate about comics and their creators.

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