15 Minutes

    (Slave Labor, 2004)
™ and © Slave Labor Graphics

When Kurt Busiek’s Astro City began 10 years ago, no one would have predicted that it would still be spawning imitators to this very day. Yes, this is one of them and it’s also one of the more average looks at the human side of super-heroics. Nonetheless, it deserves at least its own 15 minutes of attention.

Bob Elinskas squeezes out three such tales, the best being the book’s middle feature, which stars a two-bit villain newly freed from prison who is idolized by the son who never met him. The weakest is, unfortunately, the leadoff story, which contains the interesting but unrealized premise of a laid-off worker who lucks into the possession of a powerful alien weapon. And the final feature is too short to garner any kind of interest.

David Hedgecock and Mike Kelleher take a comical approach with the art, matching the lightweight tone far better than Elinskas’ bland and overly serious dialogue does. It’s an OK book for fans who can’t get enough of this kind of thing, but others have done better.

— Jim Johnson

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