John Byrne’s Next Men ended in 1995 with issue 30 and a cliffhanger ending. The 2010 series picks up where the old one ended without missing a beat. Even though the story line takes off into a new direction, the art, plot and characters meld together seamlessly – it’s hard to tell fifteen years have passed.
Every aspect of the work feels solid: the art is detailed, the characters always act according to their personalities, plot elements are never forgotten or left to chance, clothes, environments and historical details are thoroughly researched, and so on. The only complaint I can raise against the series is that it’s never really unexpected or awesome; it’s just very well executed.
By the end of the ninth and last issue, it’s clear that the story is not really finished – it’s not clear what’ll happen to the main characters, or how the last plot will be resolved. Byrne does, however, make the ending much more low-key this time, and doesn’t leave more sub-plot hanging than necessary. The story will continue in a new series, Next Men: Aftermath.
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