Written by Jim Zub
Art by Filipe Andrade
Published by Marvel Comics
Release Date: June 11, 2014
Step into a turn of the 20th century fantasy with the delightful Figment #1 by Jim Zub and Filipe Andrade.
Jim Zub and Filipe Andrade take readers to London in 1910 in the first issue of Figment, a whimsical story featuring a genius and the Disney character Figment. Zub crafts a solid tale in Figment #1, building a world that is easily accessible and entertaining to read. This time period is an easy one for readers to grasp and dive into, as this era of innovation is used so often in storytelling that with this setting alone we have somewhat of an idea of what to expect. That sounds negative, but I don’t mean it that way. This setting allows Zub to focus on the characters and parts of the story that are specific to Figment rather than wasting time fleshing out a time period and world around Figment and the protagonist Blair Mercurial. Above and beyond having the greatest name an inventor can have, Blair Mercurial is a likable character in this issue, and from the beginning readers will find themselves rooting for him. The side characters are a little stiff, but they fit their roles well and Zub writes the dialogue in this comic very well. Without dumbing the concepts down for adult readers he manages to keep the story accessible and understandable for younger readers, achieving that rare all-ages book that has something to enjoy for readers of all ages. Adults who refuse to grow up, who dig fantasy tales or just like a lighter comic every once and awhile will be delighted by Figment as this easy-flowing story will leave a smile on your face and have you wanting more immediately.
The story really takes off when Figment is in the picture as this little spark plug dragon gives the comic a lot of life. Zub’s voice for Figment is wonderful and it is obvious this character is going to charm readers immediately. The fantasy aspect that the dragon brings to the story gives Zub a lot of options to work with going forward and keeps the excitement in this issue high. Their contrasting personalities are going to be fun to read and the final pages of this issue take the story in what could be a very entertaining direction.
Figment’s charm, and the whimsical feel of the book as a whole can be attributed both to Zub’s writing and the skilled artwork of Filipe Andrade. Andrade’s style is perfectly suited for a tale that deals in the fantastical, and he shows why in Figment #1. Few artists could give this book the unique look and feel that Andrade does and his pages where he really cuts loose are stunning. The more room Andrade has to work with, the better he is and the fantastical elements of this comic really soar when he’s not constricted to small panels. This first issue is going to give a lot of readers a taste of what he’s capable of in the realm of the fantastical and he makes this story work very well in this first issue. The colour work by Jean-Francois Beaulieu gives Figment some real pop, drawing the eye to the details that are important on the page while giving the setting the rich feel of 1910 England. Beaulieu’s work enhances Andrade’s well, and if the final page is any indication this series is going to be a fun read when this art team can really let their creativity fly. The story will interest readers but the art will be what wows them as it transports their minds to the fantastical world of Figment.
Figment #1 is a solid debut issue from a talented writer and an artist that is perfectly suited to this kind of story. Readers with no prior knowledge of the Figment character will not be missing any information required to enjoy this issue and I can vouch that this is safe to read with children of any age. There aren’t a lot of comics that can be enjoyed by different age groups and I highly recommend if you’ve got kids that you pick this one up and share it with them. Zub and Andrade are going to take us on a magical adventure and I’ll happily be along for the ride.
The Verdict: 8.0/10