[Review] ‘The Shrinking Man’ #1 Has Potential But Comes Off Flat

The Shrinking Man #1 comes off as a plain but not uninteresting read. The ideas behind it are intriguing but the execution falls flat more than it hits its mark.

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WRITTEN BY: Ted Adams

ART BY: Mark Torres

PUBLISHER: IDW

PRICE: $3.99

RELEASE: 29 July 2015

The aptly titled Shrinking Man is all about what else, but a shrinking man. One day while relaxing in the sun on a boat at sea Scott is overcome by a mysterious “spray.” It looks like a yellow tinted fog or smoke but the book calls it a “spray” so I guess that’s what it is.

This “spray” has no immediate effects but gradually over time it begins shrinking Scott by a seventh of an inch every day. The mystery surrounding this shrinking is neat but the true draw is what will happen. How small will he shrink, what happens when he’s too small for humans to see with their bare eyes? Will he eventually hit the microscopic level then the same level at atoms? Given enough time will he just cease to be? This is what kept me reading, not his melodramatic home life that outstays its welcome.
Something to note, the choice to release this comic right on the heels of Ant-Man is strange and only works against the book. It almost comes off as a bizarre “What If” Ant-Man story. Our protagonist bares a striking resemblance to and has the demeanor of Hank Pym, even down to his marital troubles. If that’s not enough his name is Scott, you know the name of the guy who’s currently making shrinking popular on the big screen.

I realize that this comic is based of a book written 8 years before Ant-Man’s comic debut, but that was 1956. I’m sure there’s a very small contingent of people who’ve read that original story but for everyone else this is brand new. A ’brand new’ that’s got too much in common with it’s current contemporaries to not draw a comparison.

The Shrinking Man #1 has potential but it’s not realized in this initial issue. Instead we’re given brief glimpses of a promising future. It may all come together and be great yet but as it currently stands it’s a hard recommendation.

2/5