Martin Carver, a tech billionaire, is trying to use a terrorist attack to sell the idea of a privatized police force to the mayor of Los Angeles. The mayor isn’t willing to acquiesce, and Carver and his bodyguard, Hui-Men, leave. On the way to the car, a large armored assassin tries to kill Martin. A woman appears from nowhere and pacifies the assassin. Her name is Aphrodite, and Martin is fascinated by her.
Martin Carver is the main protagonist of Aphrodite V #1 and is framed as nothing but intelligent and well meaning throughout the comic. I can’t help but find this fascinating, because he’s a Robocop villain. His company is practically OCP, and, like OCP, he’s trying to privatize a city’s police force.
I can’t help but find this fascinating. A comic in 2018 is presenting a man trying to privatize the police force of a city as a protagonist, and Robocop turned 30 last year.
Now, it’s possible that Martin may turn into a villain in a later issue. That doesn’t seem likely, but it’s possible. It doesn’t help that he uses a terrorist attack as a guilt/scare tactic to get the mayor to sign up for his automated law enforcement nonsense.
I find it all quite funny really. What’s even funnier is that this comic is pretty good. Martin Carver is a likable character. Hui-Men is an entertaining support character. The titular Aphrodite V is interesting, even if her, “My enemies underestimate beauty,” line is a laughably bad excuse to make her look like a supermodel.
Jeff Spokes’s artwork makes this all look great too. There is an oily texture to the visuals which give them a distinct look. The action scenes are sequenced awkwardly but do largely look good. Aphrodite’s visual design is bizarre but kind of cool. The color work is bounces between this magic hour palette and a dark green, both of which look pretty damn good.
Aphrodite V #1 reads like Tony Stark decided to stay in the weapons business even after becoming Iron Man, but it’s still a good comic. Its lead is good, Aphrodite is mysterious and interesting, and the art is great. I recommend reading it like Lowlifes or Deathstroke. All these people are terrible and/or misguided, but they’re compellingly terrible. Anyway, this one gets a recommendation. Feel free to check it out.
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