I s–t you not, the three main characters of Trio are referred to as One, Two, and Three and have powers that mimic Paper (One), Scissors (Two), and Rock (Three). I wish I could say this cheesy gimmick sets the tone for Trio #4, but this comic tries to take itself too seriously, instead of going completely over the top. The same goes for the ready and available Fantastic Four parody (there’s even a guest character who is basically Namor!), but if there are allusions to FF beyond the character similarities, they were too subtle for me to get.
What Trio does have going for it is a Silver Age quality in its art style, its narrations, and even many of the actions and dialogue uttered by the characters. The narrations are fun in their dramatic manner, but that same nostalgia didn’t translate over to the bulk of the dialogue, which fell flat and told us very little about these characters. Even the ridiculous problem One, Two, and Three faced wasn’t ridiculous enough to be a great Silver Age plot and wasn’t serious enough to be believable, which isn’t to say other events weren’t. A terrible event happens in Trio #4, and I was caught off guard by it. It wasn’t Garth Ennis levels of terrible, but this event broke the Silver Age tone of the book for me and made me want to follow that plot line, instead of entering another battle with a new supervillain.
In Trio‘s defense, Issue #4 is a poor starting place as it begins by wrapping up a past plot line dealing with aliens before moving on to new things. The lack of character introduction and context to their actions set us off on the wrong foot, and I even had trouble finding anything online about the series, which left me floundering to understand the context of this issue. Also, I will admit, I’m not a huge fan of Silver Age comics, though I still hold that Trio‘s problem is it fails to go enough with that feel.
Fans of Silver Age comics might want to give Trio a try for its art style and old fashioned narration, but Trio #4 tries to be too many things and ends up doing all of them in a mediocre fashion.