Generation Zero: We Are the Future

Generation Zero: We Are the Future
Generation Zero We Are the Future review
  • North American Publisher / ISBN: Valiant - 978-1-68215-175-4
  • Volume No.: 1
  • Release date: 2017
  • UPC: 9781682151754
  • Contains adult content?: no
  • Does this pass the Bechdel test?: yes
  • Positive minority portrayal?: yes

Among the events of the first Harbinger Wars was that a large group of super powered teenagers were freed from the laboratory premises of a company who had raised them, training them to be weapons. They remain hidden, but will occasionally step from the shadows in response to requests for help. It’s an interesting premise for a superhero series, twisted a little further left of the dial by Fred Van Lente keeping the actual superheroes at a distance, and instead starting by focussing on the people troubled enough to contact them. Like Keisha Sherman, ostensibly living in an ideal community where her father is the Sheriff, but whose boyfriend dies on the verge of discovering all is not right in their town.

Keeping the superhero participation minimal is a way of restoring mystique and awe to a form now known to every child, and beyond that Van Lente has been bequeathed a cast with a novel set of super powers and uses them intelligently. A pair of creepy twins able to see the future defuse a threatening situation by spilling out “we know you will never play sportsball professionally, Drake Matheson, and your heartbeat, while an advantage now, frequently leads to cardiac arrest at an early age”. The creepiness is intentional. Whether due to unnatural origins or being deprived of a normal childhood, Van Lente supplies almost all of Generation Zero with personalities removed from the conventional, and artist Francis Portela accentuates this by drawing them all as awkward or wide eyed. As seen on the sample art, he’s a tidy artist with a high work ethic making every page a visual treat, and Derek Charm steps in with most of a chapter set in an Archie style world.

We Are the Future is the opening five chapters of what runs to nine and is concluded in Heroscape. It’s been a fun ride so far, distinct enough to separate Generation Zero from the standard superhero team and there’s still a mystery to solve.