Book One: Date With Destiny
Book Two: Two Worlds Enter, One Leaves
Book Three: Two Peas in a Pod
Written by : Ed Kuehnel and Matt Entin
Art by: Dan Schkade
Color Art: Marissa Louise
Lettering by: A Larger World Studios
Logo by: Lindsey Seligman
Suspicious Behavior Press edition Editor: Mariah Huebner
SBI Press Edition Editor: Brendan Wright
Mini Machos Dialogue edited by: Dan Castro
Design by: Fred Chao
Released by: SBI Press
Gang, when Overlord John gave me these books, I was a little excited once I saw what the content was about. A little personal background, I was actually a soundman for a few years for Dreamwave Wrestling in LaSalle, IL. (We’re back Oct 26th) We were a decent sized indy promotion, and some of the stars on WWE (Ali (our reigning champion), Lince Dorado), and probably a quarter of the AEW roster, has worked our promotion. So imagine my glee when I got a book about wrestling…
Invasion From Wrestletopia is a really fun book. Now, before you go and think I’m saying it because I’m a wrestling mark, I said I worked sound, I like money, I am not a fan of the wrestling today where it’s a bunch of spots (moves guys want to get in), no story is being told, and it is a very blurry line between faces (good), and heel’s (bad).
The pacing on it is great. The story really flows, and you don’t have to be a fan to appreciate it. Wrestling is soap opera’s for men, so if you like a lot of drama, overacting, and hyperbole…then you like wrestling. And this book really captures the feel of it. You don’t get the in depth locker room story, but you really do get the feeling of the industry.
The story starts with our hero Rock N Roll Rory Landell (ironically a heel), thinking he’s going to take the strap (championship), only to find out that the promoter has done an about face, and is letting the “Boy Scout” keep the championship, because it boosts the pay per view money.
I can’t tell you how accurate this is. The goal is always eyes on the product, and I have seen this happen more than once, though. The book makes it seem like the promotion is the promotion, like the WWE, but it could be a mid major like ROH.
So Rory decides to make up his own belt, crown himself Intergalactic Champion, cuts a promo (where they are interviewed and talk smack), declares himself the greatest ever, and that is where the trouble starts, on many levels’
First and foremost, the promoters ego’s are probably as big as, if not bigger than the performers. So when you trash the promoter’s title, without them knowing you are going to trash their title, the odds of you main eventing (top match of the night) for them, or even mid carding (middle of the road matches), drop drastically to either slim, or none. Unless you already have another job in place, and have done it for that reason, you are going to have some employment issues in the field.
Secondly, this was broadcast across the universes, and it is brought to the attention of Manifest Destiny, who is already the Intergalactic Champion, on planet Wrestletopia, and has taken umbrage to Rory’s claims.
The evil promoter Dick Draisin has told Rory to pack his bags, and Rory has gone down the path of many fallen start, criss crossing the country, drinking too much, and wrestling wherever he is wanted. Unfortunately for Rory, he has taken the route many former stars has, and has drank his way out of all of the promotions.
Then the story starts to get good, with an Intergalactic Champion, bounty hunting wrestlers hunting him for the Champion, as well as a mysterious benefactor (I suspect Draisin), and Mini Macho and his manager who just wants to retire…everyone wants Rory.
I highly suspect that somebody who wrote this book has ties to wrestling. They really caught the vibe of the industry, from how the wrestlers look out for each other and are usually friendly heel or face, to the fact when a big match is about to go down, that the promoter is more worried about his cut of the show, his cut of the merchandise, and his cut of the PPV.
The art is great. It has a Saturday Morning Wrestling Cartoon show feel to it, and I like it. The colors aren’t too over the top bold and brash, so you do still get that feel of realism, but I am from the school that if your hero or villain has muscles, then give them some muscles. I want them roided up like Bane, and Dan Schkade delivers on that part. The art is clean, there is nothing that I look at and wonder what it is, and whoever colored it did a nice job as well. Plus you can read the lettering. This is a big think for me. The trend is to use a fancy font, and if I can’t read it, I put the book down.
I read the three books available. The logo makes sense, and the covers really pop. I like the pacing of the book, and when you read it, you tend to read it in the voices of the characters, and how you expect them to sound, so obviously the story drew me in. (Sorry for the accent in my head Mini Macho) The story is a bit straight forward, but the flashbacks add to it, it doesn’t really confuse you, and fleshes out the characters. I get the feeling that somebody has been in the business previously, or followed it enough to really capture the wrestling world, with the ego’s. As I stated before, the font’s chosen make the book very easy to read, so I read it enthusiastically.
So, as a recap, fun read, fast pace, good art, realistic atmosphere, and a subject made for comic books, this is definitely worth picking up and reading, even if you aren’t a wrestling fan. At worst, if you were one at some point, read this, and then go find a local promotion and take in a show!
Stay out of the turnbuckles!