A few weeks ago Rough Riders had a solid start with an introduction to the leader of the team Teddy Roosevelt, and the first member Jack Johnson. This issue as expected we meet the rest of the team and set up for the mission at hand. First Teddy and Jack head to Coney Island to recruit the not yet legendary Harry Houdini. Unlike Jack, Teddy doesn’t as Harry if he wants to be on the team. Instead he knocks him out, chains him up and throws him into the ocean. But to their surprise, not only does he escape but he appears behind the and he takes Teddy’s gun and wallet. Classic Houdini at his best! Next on the list is Thomas Edison who doesn’t take much convincing, but it seems like he had been working on a bit more than light bulbs. The four men now head to Blackwell Island Prison to recruit Monk Eastman, who may or not work out for the team in the long run. Last but certainly not least is the sharp shooter Annie Oakley, who they find drunk in a Brooklyn Bar. She also doesn’t take too much convincing, just a dance with Teddy. As they are being briefed on their mission a group of me approach the group to rob them. This is the first chance we get to see the team in action and they do not disappoint, except for Thomas Edison who looks like he had never been in a fight in his life. It turns out that this was another test by Teddy to see how the team would work together. Everyone passed except Monk, who gets a blow to the stomach and tossed off the boat into the water. It is at this moment where Teddy reveals the team name “The Rough Riders”. Now it is off to Cuba where something dangerous lurks.
The second issue provides us with a great introduction to the rest of the team and a glance at their chemistry together. The great thing about these characters is that at one point or another we have heard of them (hopefully). So we don’t necessarily need too much of a back story to set them up. We got just enough to see where they are in their lives. I just wonder how Monk’s current status on the team is going to come back up in the story. It seems to me that they have a very well balanced team covering a lot of different sets of skills. Now going into the next issue and I am very interested to see if Adam Glass gives us a big reveal of the antagonist(s) or if they are going to be kept in the shadows as the team investigates. Also even though we have seen the team work well together initially, will their egos come into play and disrupt their mission? As far as the artwork goes, it’s not great but it’s not terrible either. I love some panels and hate others. So it is fair to say that I classify it somewhere down the middle of the pack. Aftershock has definitely got my attention, first with Replica, then with Super Zero and now Rough Riders. Take some time and check them out!
Written By: Adam Glass
Artwork: Patrick Olliffe
Colors: Gabe Eltaeb