WhatNot Publishing is breathing life into an already popular property, as they are bringing the web series, Alpha Betas, into comics form. After getting millions of views on the video platform, YouTube, Evan “VanossGaming” Fong, Marcel “BasicallyIDoWrk” Cunningham, Tyler “I AM WILDCAT” Wine, and Brian “Terroriser” Hanby have teamed up to produce the mini-series based on the animated show of same name.
Described as Rick and Morty meets Tron (and an art style that definitely mimics the popular animated show), Alpha Betas focuses on four gamers at the top of their skills, with Eddie, Buck, Mason, and Tommy taking their prowess to a whole new level as they accidentally stumble upon a conflict in the digital space between the U.S. Government and a digital terrorist that is taking place inside the game, Nimbus. These immature, but skilled, gamers now find themselves essential to stopping a dangerous plot that has huge implications outside of the game, for better or worse.
This is a fun book that brings the raunchy, but hilarious, comedy that properties like Rick and Morty have made popular, while bringing forth an engaging and unique story to accompany it. Writer Kyle Starks seems to have a great handle on the world, as it flows and feels actualized, both inside Numbus and out. While the humor is a bit on the raunchy and childish side, it all feels accurate to the characters and the world, adding some realism. As a gamer, there have been plenty of people I’ve experienced with this type of attitude, and while that’s not all gamers, everyone who plays online knows a few people like this of varied age and gender.
Artists Michael Calero and Trevor Richardson have really shown a great grasp of this kind of style, bringing that adult animation style to the pages of comics. They still find a way to make it their own, though, and have brought in great action sequences, some really fun panel layouts, and an overall feeling of fun and adventure. Numbus has a beautiful world, and it feels fully realized while the team is inside it, adding some heightened ridiculousness to really meld the humor and the world together.
Overall, this is a fun series from the new publisher, and being able to open up this series to new audiences is a real boon for everyone involved. This is a medium that really works for this type of story, and it’ll be very interesting to see where it goes from here after this opening issue.
Creative Team: Kyle Starks (writer), Michael Calero (line art), Trevor Richardson with Kenny Aitken (colorists), Micah Myers (letterer), Michael Calero and Simon Oré (editors)
Publisher: WhatNot Publishing
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