Rom: Tales of the Solstar Order #1

Writer: Christos Gage, Chris Ryall
Penciller: Guy Dorian, Sr.
Inker: Sal Buscema
Colourist: Alessandra Alexakis
Letterer: Shawn Lee
Publisher: IDW Publisher

Review by Josh Rose

I’m not all that familiar with ROM. Apparently he’s an 80’s Hasbro toy that got his own comic series at Marvel. I have an old Marvel ROM kicking around in my own collection somewhere. Anyways, ROM: Tales of the Solstar Order #1 has little to do with the regular ROM series or ROM and the Micronauts. Rather this tells a story from ROM’s past when he and a fellow spaceknight, Fy-Laa, were hunting for Direwraiths and stumbled upon a gelatinous and sentient planet.

Christos Gage and Chris Ryall make this a really easy issue to get into with no prior experience. They explain the Spaceknights’ mission and who the Direwraiths are. One thing I don’t really get is the why. Why are they at war? On the other hand, they certainly deliver the emotions: showcasing a brotherly bond in dire circumstances and heartbreak at the end.

Guy Dorian Sr.’s pencils pay homage to the original Marvel series. Dorian makes Rom look similar to the original “toaster” design rather than the sleeker, rebooted design of late. The “toaster” look was in fact originally drawn by Sal Buscema who provided the inks for this book. Alessandra Alexakis’s colours really give Rom: Tales of the Solstar Order #1 that sci-fi adventure feel (in addition to the two giant guys in space armour and aliens). The glowing red eyes and weapons, shiny armour, and pink gelatinous planet are all examples of her great colours.

The Verdict: Check it out.

Rom: Tales of the Solstar Order #1 is a good story and introduces new readers to the universe of the Spaceknights with the original ROM artist working on inks. That said, I’m not particularly motivated to pick this up again next month. It’s a single-issue story similar to the silver age backup stories. A new story will begin next issue. 

Josh Rose
Basically a hobbit, Josh is always enjoying food and drink, and going on unexpected adventures. Beware if you see him without a cup of coffee: caffeination deprivation makes this boy go loco.

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