Writing - 8/10
Art - 8.5/10
Overall - 8.3/10
Sweet Downfall #1
Writer: Stefano Cardoselli
Artist: Stefano Cardoselli
Colorist: Panta Rea
Letterer: Bram Meehan
Maturity Rating: Mature
Publisher: Scout Comics
Release Date: January 20, 2021
A crash test dummy robot working for a crime boss decides to change his future.
User Review( vote)
“Crash Test Dummies” Sweet Downfall #1
Sweet Downfall #1 finds us flung far into the future. The Earth looks different, but many things remain the same. Jonny, once a crash test dummy robot, finds himself repurposed working for the biggest, baddest crime boss in Santa Clara. Jonny does his job well, and that makes his boss very happy. But what makes Jonny happy? He does not know, but in Sweet Downfall #1 he finds it is not a life of crime. When Jonny decides not to take a package back to his boss, things change quickly. What is in the package and what will it do to Jonny’s life? Jonny starts to change his ways, but does anyone get out of a life of crime alive? Even if they are a robot?
Stefano Cardoselli brings us on a strange yet very familiar journey in Sweet Downfall #1 as we follow robot Jonny finally deciding something for himself. It reminds me a bit of the movie Chappie, which I really enjoyed. We do not learn much about Jonny, but just the general robot theme and crime have the same feel.
We actually do not get much in Sweet Downfall #1 character-wise. Cardoselli just sets up the basic story. This is fine for a #1 issue. Cardoselli does a good job of introducing us to the location, major characters, and whatnot. So, the next issue should be ready to jump off. But it also makes it hard to judge how the series will be, going forward.
The story is told in the framing of someone telling a child a bedtime type story. I do enjoy this narration effect, and the sweet tone displayed next to the pretty violent images sets a nice overall theme for the series. Sweet Downfall #1 does have this optimistic type feeling that I like. Even with the rundown city, crime, and chaos, it has this light of hope.
Stefano Cardoselli has a very distinctive and more unique art style. He draws and designs in a fashion that, while things look and resemble what they are supposed to, yet he adds some flair to them. Like you see an image and it looks like a fish and is a fish but Cardoselli adds some flair to it all his own. Sweet Downfall #1 is full of this wild perspective. His linework is fantastic, adding tons of details, and just pages you can look at for days.
I am trying to think of a way to describe his art, and I guess you could say it is like a mashup of Jim Mahfood and James Stokoe, yet still all his own. It is definitely a style of art that I think you either like or do not like. I, for one, love the wild, kinetic movement of it and the strong detail. But it also I could see being a little off-putting visually, with the different perspectives and strong detailing.
I was surprised by the brighter coloring work by Panta Rea, and how well it works. Sweet Downfall #1 has a darkness to it, yet Rea brings that light and hopefulness to the story with some nice colorations throughout. Though it is bright, Rea also captures that dinginess of Santa Clara and its inhabitants as well. Some fun lettering, as well, by Bram Meehan; it fits perfectly with Cardoselli’s wild art style.
Sweet Downfall #1 was a solid first issue. The story and major players get set up and it looks like the next issue will be ready to take off. A story of a robot finding his own and leaving a life of crime is somewhat familiar, but with the wild art style of Stefano Cordelli and the things set up in this issue, I am hoping for a new perspective and look. Sweet Downfall #1, while somber and grimy, still has this ray of hope and optimism that I hope continues through the series.
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