Reviews, Comics

Napalm Lullaby #1 Review: An Explosive Start

Turn up the heat for Napalm Lullaby, the latest Image Comics series by superstar comic book creators Rick Remender and Bengal.

Napalm Lullaby 1 Review Cover
Image: Image Comics
By: Javier ReyesMar 13, 2024, 9:33 AM

Napalm Lullaby #1

Review
Rating
10
Excellent
Napalm Lullaby 1 Full Cover

Writer: Rick Remender

Artist: Bengal

Publisher: Image Comics

Release Date: March 13, 2024

Page Count: 48

Format: Single-issue

Rick Remender and Bengal dazzle with a dystopian story that blends the intensity of Mad Max with the sci-fi elements of The Matrix. The pulse-pounding debut issue delivers a promising start to what could be another incredible series from two of comics’ top creators.

Rick Remender and Bengal, the creative team behind Death or Glory, are back with a new Image Comics series that will knock your socks off. Look at Remender’s other comics, like Deadly Class and The Sacrificers, and you’ll notice he has a flair for stories with a rebellious and angsty energy to them. Napalm Lullaby joins that party, as it’s a full-on dystopian future story with characters who are mysterious, alluring, and oh-so-stylish. This debut issue takes you for a ride where you may not be sure where you’re going but leaves you excited to go nonetheless. Want to know more about it? Continue reading below for my full thoughts and review of Napalm Lullaby #1!

Napalm Lullaby 1 - guy walking with backpackImage: Image Comics

Overview

It took a little over fifty years for a mysterious religious group to take control over most of the world. Zealots praise their Magnificent Leader, Glokor, in hopes of a better life. But while the wealthy get to live clean and posh lives, those less fortunate are forced into lives of violence and deceit in the slums. In this dystopian future, it’s up to a brother and sister duo to change the natural order of things. All they need to do is come up with a plan to kill a god. 

Review

This issue was one hell of a way to get this new series going. In a unique twist of storytelling, it introduces you to the comic’s world through the eyes of a very minor villain. Because all that character wants is to get paid and get laid, his perspective shows how ruthless, selfish, and full of lies the world is. It’s not until the second half of the issue that we meet the actual main characters of the story. But as soon as they take the driver’s seat, it’s a non-stop adrenaline rush to the comic’s fantastic and foreboding final splash page. By the end of the issue, you get a solid grasp of the dangers and inequality that shape the comic’s dystopian world.

Napalm Lullaby 1 - guy seeing lots of moneyImage: Image Comics

But as expansive as the comic’s world feels right from the jump, it does not try to feed you everything about its story in one go. It’s surprisingly light on overt exposition, leaving you to piece together the details about its world and characters. With sights of dilapidated slums, lavish churches, and flashes of highly advanced technology, the comic throws you into the thick of a dystopian world with something new to discover at every turn. But in case you’re craving to know more about what’s going on, the afterword by Rick Remender has what you need to get up to speed. It’s a great write-up that contextualizes more of the story’s background and the inspirations that went into putting it together. 

With that said, Bengal’s incredible art brings life to this world I can’t stop gushing about. Everything from the diverse scenery to the stylish character designs is crafted with such detail that each page turn feels like a treat for the eyes. Even though so much of the story still feels vague at this point (considering this is only the first issue), that hardly feels like a problem because the art presents everything about the comic so beautifully that you can’t help but get sucked into whatever moment is happening on the page. Especially with the comic’s final splash page, it’s a perfect example of a cliffhanger that shows you so much while saying so few words.

Napalm Lullaby 1 - guy driving a tricycle with woman passengerImage: Image Comics

Final Thoughts

If there are two things Rick Remender loves, it’s punk rock and sci-fi, and Napalm Lullaby has both of those in spades. With its two rebellious lead characters who strive to take down a “god,” the comic has all the makings of one incredibly exciting story. While there’s still so much to learn about this comic’s fascinating world and characters, this debut issue pushes all the right buttons to give you a taste of the wild ride that’s to come. 

Why You Should Read Napalm Lullaby

  • Bengal’s art brings a unique flair to the comic’s world.
  • Rick Remender showcases his knack for sci-fi world-building and characterization.
  • The comic delivers a stylish spin on a dystopian future. 

TAGGED: Image Comics
A new home for fans and creators of comics, manga, webtoons, and more
© 2022 MASTERFILE CO. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED. GONKBONK AND ALL RELATED TITLES, LOGOS AND CHARACTERS ARE TRADEMARKS OF MASTERFILE CO.