Dark Engine #1

Dark Engine #1

Writer: Ryan Burton Artist: John Bivens Publisher: Image Comics Release Date: July 16, 2014 Cover Price: $3.50 Critic Reviews: 17 User Reviews: 5
7.3Critic Rating
5.7User Rating

With ribsword in hand, with gore in her curling locks, Sym has been sent to the distant past to murder her creators' enemies. But the twisted alchemists who made Sym do not know that the engine that powers her is sentient, that it is the seed of their destruction. By blood and by fury, Sym will carve out her destiny in this new ongoing series.

  • 9.0
    Backwards Compatible - Paul Fiander Jul 29, 2014

    Dark Engine’s opening is a jump into the unknown but if this is the sign of things to come then it’s a jump worth taking. The balance of art and dialogue is spot on but be warned this is a visceral ride that does not hold your hand in any way shape of form. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    Comics: The Gathering - spicytoilet Jul 16, 2014

    The art and lettering are spot on. And the little bit of dialogue I was able to ingest were fine. I just wish Burton would've added a bit more commentary here and there. Other than that, I can totally recommend this one. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    Bloody Disgusting - Zac Thompson Jul 16, 2014

    Dark Engine is hauntingly beautiful and unique. It beckons you in with poetic dialogue and captivates you with visceral force. Get it on your pull list immediately. Read Full Review

  • 9.0
    Geeks Unleashed - Chris Romero Jul 18, 2014

    Burton and Bivens have made a heck of a splash, and they're quickly on their way to skyrocketing Dark Engine into a comic masterpiece not to be missed. Read Full Review

  • 8.5
    Rhymes With Geek - Ben Penfold-Marwick Jul 16, 2014

    Dark Engine #1 is a very promising first chapter for an ongoing book. In a sea of sci-fi fantasy comics, it has a very original voice. This book doesnt spoon feed you or hold your hand through the chaos with a nice, quirky, familiar voice, but it promises to reward readers who give it a chance. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Florida Geek Scene - Peter Schmeiser Jul 16, 2014

    Once I was able to digest the visuals and marry them with the narrative, I was entranced by this book. The idea of a time-assassin is becoming recycled, however, I think Ryan Burton has the resources to deliver a creative set of consequences and also tension to this story that will deliver enough rewards for the mental sleuthing that is required. Issue one is confusing and beautiful, and Im curious to see what happens next. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Comic Bastards - Steve Paugh Jul 16, 2014

    Just like I don't have a clear concept of where it's coming from, I also don't exactly know where Dark Engine is going. Although (and this may be a SPOILER, I dunno), chances are Syn and her belly bomb will end up being the paradoxical engine of humanity's destruction. Regardless, I'm glad I took a chance on this book, which has a style and cadence that grates as much as it amazes. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    All-Comic - Kyle Welch Jul 16, 2014

    Dark Engine has the mood and creativity that Remender or Hickman books often display. Dark Engine sits comfortably with Image contemplates like Pretty Deadly and East of West. Burton's perfectly placed dialog and Bivens' dynamic art introduce readers to a world and story that begs to be explored. From the sinister open to its ominous final page, Dark Engine is an enthralling first issue. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Newsarama - Edward Kaye Jul 17, 2014

    The issue is fast-paced and packed to the brim with battling " mostly of the dinosaur-slaying variety. The plot, though, feels a little dense and requires close attention, like the first chapter of a long novel. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    We The Nerdy - Jean-Luc Botbyl Jul 21, 2014

    If you're looking for something less long-winded; Dark Engine is a very good comic book, for the art alone. At this point, after only one issue, I have no doubt that Bivens is going to be a hot name on the scene, and being in on the ground floor is going to be awesome. The same is true of Burton; though he doesn't really get his chance to shine here, seemingly by his own choice. What writing there is is definitely fine, however, seeing more will definitely allow a more solidified opinion on it. I'll definitely be back for the next issue, and I highly recommend that you check out Dark Engine. Read Full Review

  • 8.0
    Major Spoilers - George Chimples Jul 23, 2014

    This is one of the more interesting fantasy first issues I've picked up this year, and I think it's well worth a look. Read Full Review

  • 7.0
    AiPT! - David Brooke Jul 15, 2014

    If you're willing to take a chance on something completely different you will be remiss to find anything so batshit crazy as Dark Engine. Give it a try. Read Full Review

  • 6.0
    ComicList - Brandon Borzelli Jul 19, 2014

    The comic book is fantasy and horror blended together. It has elements of Dark Crystal, Legend, Lord of the Rings and many other movies or novels in it. That helps because you can't sum up those stories in one issue either so this has some room to get some traction. I was hoping to at least like the characters coming out of this but that didn't quite happen. This comic needs some work in the next couple of issues if there is to be any kind of interest in the long run. This is a decent start story-wise and a visual masterpiece in the art department. Check it out. Read Full Review

  • 6.0
    Comics Bulletin - Mark Majndle Jul 22, 2014

    This comic, written by Ryan Burton (Dead End Boys) with the naughty penciling via ohn Thomas Bivens (Popgun), is about a time travelling dame that literally pops into new time zones through another living being, leaving said animal shred into itty bitty pieces! She then kills everything in sight with a bad-ass giant bone sword (starting with the dinosaurs and ending in ancient Egypt). Sure, there was a whole plot that went along with this madness but it bored me pretty quickly. I mean, with all the blood and boobies, what kind of self-respecting man even can pay attention to the story arc? Read Full Review

  • 5.0
    Eye On Comics - Don MacPherson Jul 17, 2014

    Dark Engine kind of strikes me like a cross between East of West and Prophet. It's got an interesting contrast going between a cerebral tone and a sense of brutality and savagery that grabs the reader's attention. Read Full Review

  • 5.0
    Comic Book Resources - Greg McElhatton Jul 18, 2014

    In many ways, the scene mentioned earlier with the exploding hippo sums up "Dark Engine" #1 in a nutshell. It's strange and eye-catching, but at the same time there's a certain level of befuddlement going on. The image will definitely linger in your head, but the more you think about it, the less you find in terms of a story. With a sharper story flow, "Dark Engine" can go far. Without it -- well, at least we'll always have the hippo. Read Full Review

  • 2.0
    Major Spoilers - Chris Wilson Jul 23, 2014

    I cannot recommend Dark Engine #1 in any way. It certainly isnt worth a buy and Im not sure even worth reading. Syms a strong female character but the issue is insanely confusing and one giant, violent fight between a woman and dinosaurs. If you want to see a character pee and living things ripped apart by various means, this might be the book for you. I dont have interest in reading fantasy stories and Dark Engine did nothing to change that. It might have turned me off more. Read Full Review

  • 10
    Corum Jul 21, 2014

    Holy cow! This...this is incredible. Dark fantasy at it's best! Can't recommend this book enough. Both the art and the writing are top notch; I can't wait to see where the story goes from here. It feels like the first chapter to a book. Wish more books were like this--no, scratch that. If all books were like this, I'd be poor. Thank you, Image! Thank you, Burton and Bivens!

  • 5.5
    Images Unplugged Jul 29, 2014

    I really hoped for great things for the first issue of Dark Engine. From the first preview of Biven's art I was hooked. However the pacing and flow of the issue especially for being the first is really hard to follow. There are times of brilliance but for the most part I was left confused. Just as the story gets going we are left with 9 pages of fantastic art but with no clear idea of what just happened. My hopes are still high for this series and I'm hoping issue 2 is better. Full Thoughts and Preview at Images Unplugged

  • 5.5
    Jon-C17 Nov 16, 2014

    OK, while the art is certainly unique and captivating, the erratic style makes it difficult to follow some panels. I have a rough idea of what the story entails, but mainly the jumbled pictures makes it a slow read. I am intrigued and interested in reading issue 2, but I hope it picks up or I'm going to have to spend money other places.

  • 4.5
    Cosmic Ray Nov 16, 2014

    Couldn't finish it.

  • 3.0
    Gizmo Jul 20, 2014

    Not a good introductory issue. I have only a vague idea of what is going on. Clearly Ryan Burton intends to feed in little snippets of detail as the story reveals itself, but he needs to give a little more if he wants readers to commit to yet another ongoing series out of Image. The art doesn't provide any clarity either, it becomes very muddled, especially in the action sequences. There are pages full of extreme-closeup panels where Sym is killing dinosaurs for reasons unknown and, not to spoil the climax, but there is some kind of random tentacle porn involved. I'm sure the art team will improve as their experience grows, but I can't recommend this.

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