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G.I. Combat #1 - The War That Time Forgot; The Unknown Soldier, Chapter One Review

4

Wave 2 of the New 52 features the return of a DC classic, G.I. Combat featuring The War Time Forgot and Unknown Soldier.

The Good

Since this book is really two different comics, both about war, we're going to split them up. Overall, I actually like the fact the book is split into two different stories. It's a cool idea and let's DC dip more into it's war stories.

The War Time Forgot

Ariel Olivetti is on a DC book! Yes! Olivetti is one of my favorite artists, and it's great to finally see him over at DC, even if he isn't drawing one of the more popular super-heroes. However, you know what he is great at drawing? Pterodactyls! His more realistic art style translates well to this book, which deals with real life, plus some dinosaurs. There's two-page spread of some military personnel shooting down some Pterodactyls that is so awesome. There's actually another two-page spread, at the end of the story as well, and Olivetti's work is the highlight of this story.

The original War Time Forgot takes place during WWII, and I'm very glad the story has been updated and made contemporary. As much as I love WWII, and stories during that time, it's been done to death. Placing this story in more contemporary times makes it more accessible to new readers, and frankly, this story is a ton of fun.

Unknown Solider

Justin Gray and Jimmy Palmiotti are the kings of non-super hero books. They are also great at taking characters I know, but never read up on, and making them easily accessible and interesting to new readers. We get a brief origin to the Unknown Soldier and it's chalk full of action... really awesome action.

Dan Panosian is the artist on the Unknown Soldier story, and it fits the writing style extremely well. It's gritty and a bit chaotic. There's no single panel or page that stands out because all the action in this issue is fantastic. Between both stories, I think Unknown Soldier works a bit better on the page than War Time Forgot since we get a bit more in depth with a single character rather than a whole group.

The Bad

While I really enjoyed the book, it didn't blow me away. I thought that with this creative team, the book would be dynamite, and it's almost there, but I was a tiny bit let down... TINY BIT.

I have a feeling that not many people will pick this up because it's a war book... That's just wrong. It's a great book no matter whether it has super-powered beings in capes in it or not.

The Verdict

I loved this first issue! Two great stories for $3.99! I'm happy to see one of my favorite artists, Ariel Olivetti on a DC book, and I just loved how he drew those Pterodactyls. I really liked they made this a contemporary story and didn't leave it in WWII. Unknown Soldier was also great! I love Gray and Palmiotti's writing and how they handle this darker character. Dan Panosian's art fits the story incredibly well.

On the down side of things, I was a tad let down with the issue. Don't get me wrong, it was awesome, but I expected just a little bit more, and I have a feeling this book may get passed up just because of the genre.

Overall, buy this book. I highly recommend it. It may not be a super-hero book, but don't let that fool you. This is just as strong, if not stronger than many of the DCnU books out.

13 Comments
Posted by cincyducksfan35

I was very surprised to have enjoyed the Unknown Soldier story more than the War that Time Forgot story. Both were good, but Unknown Soldier did a better job managing the 14 pages it had to use. While War that Time Forgot flew by, Unknown Soldier felt nearly normal comic length. Both were good enough to bring me back for the second issue and probably get an addition to the pull list

Posted by inferiorego

@cincyducksfan35 said:

I was very surprised to have enjoyed the Unknown Soldier story more than the War that Time Forgot story. Both were good, but Unknown Soldier did a better job managing the 14 pages it had to use. While War that Time Forgot flew by, Unknown Soldier felt nearly normal comic length. Both were good enough to bring me back for the second issue and probably get an addition to the pull list

Completely agree.

Staff
Posted by zackattack529

i thought the art is what stood out in this issue. but i will not be continuing it, not because it doesnt have superheros. but because of the price tag and because for an extra $4 added to my huge pull list it didnt blow me away. pllus i already added dial H and i liked Dial H better and its cheaper

Posted by inferiorego

@zackattack529 said:

i thought the art is what stood out in this issue. but i will not be continuing it, not because it doesnt have superheros. but because of the price tag and because for an extra $4 added to my huge pull list it didnt blow me away. pllus i already added dial H and i liked Dial H better and its cheaper

Dial H was great, but if I had to choose, I'd pick GI Combat over that only because I like War Comics a bit more.

Both are great choices!

Staff
Posted by jsphsmth

The Second Wave is coming out of the gates strong. I was a little worried about JT Krul's involvement as I have continually been disappointed by his work. Good to see that change.

Posted by TheOptimist

I'm not a war comics guy. I just haven't ever really been into them. I bought all of Men of War... the first issue and the last two issues were really solid... but were standard war fare, and no matter how good they were for the genre, I just couldn't enjoy them.

I'm giving GI Combat a chance, just as I did Men of War. I'm not the central ring of the target audience. I'm a bit of a stretch to really sell this to... although I love the writers and artists, and I love dinos vs. army as a concept, and the unknown soldier idea is one of my favorite concepts, no matter how applied... but I'm also realistic that this is probably not going to be my top of the pile... because I can, for now, I'm going to trial run this book... and we'll see where I go from there.

Posted by CircularLogic

Hmmm, Gray and Palmiotti usually have me sold on anything, but this title probably won't last too long, seeing as both of DC's war books, Men of War and Blackhawks, got canned so soon. Still, it sounds pretty damn interesting, so if I get a chance to read it and it impresses I might pick it up.

Posted by Jonny_Anonymous

Come on people, get this god damn issue!!!!!

Posted by Green ankh

I like that DC is taking a shot other things. Look how well Jonah Hex/All Star Western has been recieved. I don'r know why Men at War didnt catch on i really liked it. And i wish Blackhawks had been given more time to flush out. I have said it before DC is the real house of ideas. Marvel may have the movies but DC totally has the print nailed.

Posted by primepower53

@spiderbat87 said:

Come on people, get this god damn issue!!!!!

agreed!

Posted by Zeeguy91

This review makes me wish that I got this issue now. I actually might pick it up tomorrow. I've never really read war comics, I've always been more into the superhero stuff than anything else, but...consider my curiosity piqued.

Posted by Bobzenub

I'm not sure what to think of the uncanny hybridization between 3D rendering and "traditional" art in The War Time Forgot. It's off-putting, yet kinda matching to the concept.

Posted by ThePilot

At first glace i figured this wouldn't even be as good as Men Of War ,which wasn't even that good, but this was such a fun read and Unknown Soldier was really cool. Can't wait for issue two!