Review by Frank Plowright
In early 1943 Tommy Flynn is leading a mission when he sees what shouldn’t be there. Perhaps a Nazi base on a Pacific island is unusual, but it’s not inexplicable, but dinosaurs are. He’s the only person to make it back alive, with footage yet, but it’s too fantastic and no-one believes him.
A few months later, though, and the balance of probability has shifted and Tommy is recruited as part of a four person international team sent to deal with the German base. There’s the American super soldier, although without the stars and stripes costume, the cool English femme fatale, and the Japanese defector who believes his country behaved dishonourably in entering World War II. Fortunately, he’s ninja-skilled.
Stephen Mooney, both writer and artist, has stitched together Half Past Danger from obviously beloved influences. A little Captain America, a little Land That Time Forgot, a little Indiana Jones, and what’s a pulp period drama without a hefty helping of Nazis? It’s a very cinematic mix and Mooney exploits the possibilities by rushing from one menace to the next as they constantly escalate and the locations switch. Everything rockets along swimmingly with Mooney choreographing the action well, but his people often look stiff and distractingly awkward.
The pace, however, compensates for a few artistic lapses, and the pulp aesthetic shines through, as does Mooney obviously having a lot of fun putting Half Past Danger together. That’s confirmed by his chapter by chapter notes at the back of the book, which feature along with his character designs, these really beautifully drawn showing none of the stiffness affecting his in-story figures.
Rollicking good adventure is the order of the day, along with some good surprises, and if that’s what you’re looking for, this provides the full three courses. The cast return in Dead to Reichs.