Writer: Torunn Grønbekk
Artist: Julius Ohta
Color Artist: Bryan Valenza
Cover Artist: Josemaria Casanovas
Publisher: Marvel Comics
The old world is dead and a new world order has risen. When the supervillains of the Marvel universe banded together to take down the heroes, they won. Now only the Wastelands remain, and while Victor Von Doom joined this alliance, he has his own plans. For even in the post-apocalypse as shown in Wastelanders: Doom #1, Dr. Doom still rules.
So, Marvel Comics is dipping back into the Old Man Logan universe once again, this time exploring it through the Wastelanders series as it’s called. Each showing the life of one of several characters, including none other than Doctor Doom himself. You don’t need to have read or know much about the original comic series other than general gist which is given in the comic’s recap and just roll with it. ‘Cause that’s what this comic does.
The idea is pretty straightforward: Dr. Doom discovers a mysterious town in his territory and investigates its dark secrets. The story feels a bit like a dark fairy tale as Doom travels through the town and makes his way inward, meeting some strange characters, seeing the eerie nature of the town, and uncovering its secrets. The comic’s biggest strength is Dr. Doom himself. There’s no need to worry how different this version of Doom is, he feels like his mainstream self transplanted into this post-apocalyptic version of Marvel’s Earth.
The writer nails Doom’s characterization in his narration, dialogue, and actions, never making him too EXTREME or darker and edgier than he really needs to be. Of course, this can be seen as a con, since others might want to see how different this version of Dr. Doom can be. The art is also good and makes everyone and everything look good in the comic, Dr. Doom especially. The comic’s art manages to not only have cool shots of Doom but also make him expressive through his body language and panel framing in the comic. Not to mention, the action scenes in the comic look good when they show up.
The major downside to this comic is that we don’t get to see Dr. Doom rule in this setting, or have him mix it up with the other crazy post-apocalyptic elements that have become synonymous with the Old Man Logan universe. Had the book been longer perhaps there could’ve been more exploration of his rule in this dystopian America and his plans for this broken world. However, the comic still takes place in a Marvel comics setting, so there are callbacks to recognizable elements of Doom’s past and he does engage with a few other notable Marvel characters.
Wastelanders: Doom #1 delivers a post-apocalyptic story with Dr. Doom as the lead character. This works for and against the comic since the writer gets Dr. Doom right as a character, but mileage will vary if readers wanted to see a far more different version of Doom. The story, dialogue, and pacing are good, and the art team does a solid job to make Dr. Doom and the rest of the comic look good from start to finish.