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FX – Wayne Osborne & John Byrne

November 7, 2009

‘Right now, I just want to… fly!’


Wayne Osborne is a lucky devil; first he made friends with John Byrne, a comic book legend (penciller and writer on Uncanny X-Men, the underestimated Alpha Flight, Fantastic Four, Superman, Hellboy…). Then, he managed to convince Byrne to pencil the scripts he wrote with the experience and knowledges acquired during years as a fanboy.
EDIT: Byrne actually offered his pencils for $20 000 an episode to any potential writer with the sufficient means; more here. Therefore, the story of FX making lost a bit of its spontaneity to me.

The book deals with Tom, a teenager who some day gets the power to create and transform at will a kind of yellow armor (like DC’s Green Lantern), and becomes FX, a superhero.

The storyline is very classic: Tom has to manage his secret identity and new responsibilities while still going to high school, is helped in this purpose by his jealous best friend, has a crush on the high school’ s beauty, and is bullied by the aforementioned cutie’s boyfriend.

Osborne intentionally fills his story with references and characters from horror and fantastic movies: King Kong, Bela Lugosi’s Dracula, Mummy and Frankenstein creatures, dinosaurs… Picture all of this in your mind, with pencils by John Byrne; what comic fan boy could resist reading the book?

The book is therefore packed with cinematic action, with Byrne’s classic and efficient style. The story suffers from a lack of consistency though, as a superhero team comes out of the blue from the 4th episode, and no context or historical background is provided. This worsens in the 5th and 6th episodes that conclude the story; an other team arrives from nowhere, and joins FX in the final battle with his nemesis.

Nevermind this, FX is still great fun to read, and Osborne has obviously reached its objective: a comic book written by a fanboy, about a fanboy, aimed at fanboys. And John Byrne pencils it!

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