Written & Created by Matthias Wolf
Art by Carlos Gomez
Colors by Simon Bork & Teodoro Gonzalez
Letters by Chris Studabaker
Razor Wolf Entertainment
Cover price: $14.95; Available now
One of the great things about being a reviewer — no matter what you’re reviewing — is that it really forces you out of your comfort zone. It puts things in front of your eyes that perhaps you wouldn’t normally give a look. Sometimes you go through it and realize that your instincts were right and whatever it was wasn’t your cup ‘o tea. But sometimes you find something fresh and new that makes you re-evaluate how you decide to look at things. For me, Unbeatable was the latter.
On the surface, Unbeatable appears to be like so many other manga-influenced books out there today. The art is stylized, the colors are bold, and the action is prevalent on nearly every page. It’s only when you get into the story that you realize this book is so much more. It’s a fully realized origin story. And in today’s comic market, finding an entire graphic novel that focuses on developing a character’s origin is a big ‘ol breath of fresh air.
Unbeatable is the story of high school student Heimen Dale. Heiman is unremarkable in every way which makes him, at first, like 99% of us that will read it. And that makes him relatable. I liked Heimen right off the bat. He felt real to me. He likes the girl that should be unattainable for a guy like him. He puts himself in stupid situations to try to impress her. He gets knocked on his ass again and again. But unlike 99% of us, Heimen gets up again and again. And that’s what Unbeatable is really about — getting your ass up off the ground no matter how many times you get knocked down. Not a bad message, if you ask me. Creator Matthias Wolf weaves a tale that hints at a much larger mythology around this very relatable character. As a comic writer myself, I know that accomplishing that is no easy feat.
Like I said, Unbeatable is so much more than just surface, but the surface sure ain’t bad. Artist Carlos Gomez and colorists Simon Bork and Teodoro Gonzalez make every page pop with clean lines and a lush, rich color pallet. The entire creative team behind the book should be commended. It looks as solid and professional as anything on the market.
My hope is that Matthias Wolf has a grand plan for Heimen Dale and that Unbeaetable isn’t the end of the story. It would be a shame to let such a compelling origin story go to waste, especially with so many paths open to the story as it comes to a close. Whatever they do next, this is a creative team to keep an eye out for.