Comics Reviews

World Class Graphic Novel Review – Comic Book Blog

World Class Original Graphic Novel

Writer: Jay Sandlin

Artist: Patrick Mullohand

Colorist: Rebecca Nalty

Letterer: Justin Birch

Reviewer: KrisK

Soccer! In comics! Sports comics rarely grace the shelves, with the biggest series recently being Fence. So World Class enters the fray with little competition on the shelves. (Ignoring the manga series which for now doesn’t poach sales). It’s a good thing World Class gives it a 110%, though, delivering a great sports drama full of teen angst and found family.

World Class follows Adrian “The Columbian Cannon” Molina. a talented teenager with a powerful right leg. He lives in Columbia, but he dreams of the big leagues in Europe. His father, a coffee farmer, pushes his son for a better life, as well. A scout from Europe comes to Columbia to watch Adrian play. Adrian’s team goes against a London Prep school, and a rich, talented bully named Titan Evans devastates his team. Adrian sees his dreams go down the drain.

Titan excels as a punchable jerk

The scout disagrees and offers him a full ride and a ticket to Europe to play for the London Prep team. He takes the gig, but he meets immediate aggression from the team’s star, Titan. He’s a Type A jerk with xenophobic tendencies, and his dad donates huge cash to the school, making him untouchable. Adrian finds help, though, in other team members and school mates, and he develops as a soccer player. Bisexual love Triangles emerge, as they do in sports comics these days. There is sports drama, romantic drama, and good old angst.

Sandlin nails the sport of soccer. Every game flows perfectly. Strategy and action blend perfectly during the games. The personal drama of Adrian, facing xenophobia and fear of failure, drives the story forward. The various personal relationships, dynamics, and subplots let the story proceed effortlessly. I can’t decide on a piece of fat to cut in the whole story. If anything, I wish there was more, and hopefully a sequel will come.

Mullohand’s draws sports better than most draw superhero battles. He manages to illustrate multiple moves in a single panel. The games flow from play to play seamlessly. Soccer looks better on these pages than any movie or FIFA game. Outside of the field, the art focuses on the emotions of the characters. Adrian’s relationships with family, faculty, and friends guides the story heavily. The art leans into this with intimate body language and expression. The art shows many unsaid things between characters, particularly with potential romantic developments. Nalty nicely colors the comic, making the world vibrant and exciting.

Verdict: Buy! World Class delivers for all who enjoy an action-packed sports comic filled with angst, romance, and drama. Mad Cave remains a young publisher to watch.

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