The ice age cometh, again, in Vertigo’s latest series, its chilling calamity brought forth by creators Joshua Williamson and Jason Shawn Alexander. Frostbite #1 is a familiar tale that makes good use of well-worn tropes. Its clear narrative and well-constructed characters make for a strong initial debut.
Williamson, somehow avoiding the bevy of ice-related puns at his disposal, does an excellent job of crafting a gripping narrative at the start. His opener is fast and moody, working in strong contrast to the frigid setting it’s framed in. That building sense of momentum carries on to the introduction of the book’s leads, Williamson using solid dialogue and situational circumstance as a way of establishing his lived in world. This proves especially important, as once the story gets going and the presumed focus is introduced, the world and its terrors begins to feel rather familiar. Such is the risk one takes with a genre tale, and to his credit Williamson appears well aware of the expected tropes, putting his own spin on many. It’s easy to tick off the book’s imaginary checkboxes – a dying planet, a mysterious cure, an unlikely hero in position to save humanity – but even for all its familiarity, there’s still enough to this first issue that stands apart.