Austin to face off against Sommers in new Bionic mash-up coming this week

Bionic Man vs Bionic Woman Issue 1 Chen cover

A borg serial killer is on the loose, making his way from Kansas City to somewhere nearby Lawrence, Kansas, 40 miles away.  OSI has video footage of his last rampage, taking out several agents.  The results aren’t pretty.  OSI has identified a well-established, horrifying M.O.

Unlike the OSI-created menace from Phil Hester’s Bionic Man series, Oscar Goldman has no idea who is behind this new villain.  But he’s going to loan Steve Austin to the FBI to attempt to sleuth out the answer to that question.

Meanwhile in Manhattan (presumably Manhattan, NY and not Manhattan, KS) Goldman has set Jamie Sommers (sometimes spelled in the book as Jaime) on a mission to a stripper club to bring in an international arms dealer.

Bionic Man vs Bionic Woman Issue 1 Lau cover

The commonality between Austin and Sommers is Goldman and we expect that is how they will be brought together again.  In the preface we learn that this new crossover series takes place before the Bionic Woman series, where Sommers lost her memory and went rogue against OSI, and sometime after the events that left Sommers near death, to become the cybernetic equal to her old boyfriend Steve Austin.

Bionic Man vs Bionic Woman Issue 1 Herbert cover

Somehow I doubt we’ll see any “Bionic Ever After” or hear Steve Austin singing a love song voiceover for Jamie as in their early encounters in the The Six Million Dollar Man TV series.  Bionic Man vs. Bionic Woman #1, first in a new limited series, has multiple incentive cover options showing otherwise, each with nice art design by Batgirl artist Ardian Syaf, as well as Sean Chen, Jonathan Lau, and Jack Herbert.

Bionic Man vs Bionic Woman Issue 1 Syaf cover

Writer Keith Champagne demonstrates he knows his characters, and his audience, including bringing in some good dialogue with a touch of nostalgia.  Jose Luis makes a good showing of keeping the look of the faces of Austin, Sommers and Goldman from the other Dynamite Comics series similar enough that these characters will be familiar to readers of the monthly series.  I can’t rave enough about Luis’s costume choices for Austin, including his classic red track suit, trading his trademark red Adidas dragons for a pair of whites.  Austin looks cool, and Champagne’s dialogue for when Austin meets a new agent partner is spot on.  The action sequences are also pretty powerful and full of energy.  I really noticed the color work throughout–in a good way–created by Inlight Studios.

The cover art for Issue #2 and plot description have been released already and suggests further that this series will be a keeper for Bionic fans.

Bionic Man vs. Bionic Woman Issue #1 is available at comic book stores January 16, 2013.

C.J. Bunce

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