Tuesday, February 3, 2015
Archer and Armstrong #26 (Classic Valiant)
A mysterious and devastating electromagnetic field has surrounded the entire Earth, and immortal drunkard Armstrong and his Buddhist sidekick Archer are smack dab in the middle of the a freeway as chaos breaks out, encountering all sorts of threats, from looters, to resurrected dinosaurs...
It's rather amusing that both the beginning and end of Archer and Armstrong were part of a crossover that by and large, had nothing to do with them.
This issue is very brief. The title duo's reactions and actions during the Chaos Effect are rushed, and the dinosaur plot is just a waste. It literally only lasts two pages! As a tie-in, this issue fails, as it tells us nothing about what the Chaos Effect is, not are the leads caught in any serious situation caused by it that tests their mettle and shows off their character. They just stumble around, acquire a jazz CD, then very briefly encounter a couple of dinosaurs, which they immediately incinerate.
The ending to this issue is pretty miserable, and a rather downer conclusion for the entire series, especially if you know what happens to Archer and Armstrong in the main Chaos Effect book. This ending isn't a bang, but a whimper.
The art here is mostly passable, with the worst problem being a printing error, where there's a blank speech bubble from Armstrong, and its text is on the page 'under' it! This happens again a bit later, but unfortunately the misplaced text is over a dark background, therefore unreadable. The cover is ok, but only shows action in the tiny strip in the middle. It also shows the characters as looking like their old selves, with the never-changing clothes, and Archer's shaved head, which are both long since absent qualities from the series.
This final issue of Archer and Armstrong isn't terrible, but merely very mediocre, and it ends the series on a low note...