'C.O.W.L.': Meet your next comic obsession | EW.com

Books | Shelf Life

'C.O.W.L.': Meet your next comic obsession -- EXCLUSIVE IMAGES

COWL COVER

(Image Comics)

As we gear up for a Fall TV season filled with superheroes and shows based on comic books, a lot of people (myself included) have been waiting for the next big TV series to explode from the comic book publisher Image Comics – publisher of The Walking Dead, which first made the transition to the small screen in 2010. In C.O.W.L., I believe we have the next best contender.

The buzz behind C.O.W.L. has been building since the series was announced at the Image Expo earlier this year. Co-written by Kyle Higgins and Alec Siegel, it reads as a down and dirty Mad Men meets Heroes in ’60s Chicago. Labor unions and corrupt politicians lay the groundwork that super-powered agents fly over. On the artwork is Rod Reis, an artist whose coloring you may have seen in several DC Comics – but C.O.W.L. makes his first major published sequential work. Somewhere between Bill Sienkevich and Phil Noto, Rod’s work is dynamic and graphic, with a timeless atmosphere.

Based on a short film Higgins made called The League, C.O.W.L. takes that story one step further while also keeping it grounded in a film noir-inspired aesthetic. The characters feel real – not like pastiches of existing superheroes, but rather actual people who happen to have superpowers. The series features an ensemble cast, and through solid pacing, we get a feel for each of them. The action carries weight from the start, and I suspect it’ll get even more intense as the series moves forward. You can pick up the first issue in comic shops today – and most likely will be watching it on TV before too long. See five exclusive images from C.O.W.L. after the jump.

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