Good Luck #1 is a frantic and fun mindbender of a comic book built on psychedelic concepts that blur the line between metaphysics and science fiction. The new Boom! Studios miniseries created by writer Matthew Erman and artist Stefano Simeone opens with two gods of luck making their presence known on Earth. While the details surrounding their arrival are left vague, readers will know it launches an "Age of Luck," an era where science has the ability to quantify and even isolate Luck in physical form. It's in this backdrop that readers are introduced to the Unfortunates, a group of four teenagers born without any Luck. After years of isolation and training, the Unfortunates are sent into the Kismet Zone where the two gods reside, hoping to obtain a Kismet Core and free the people trapped therein.
While the backdrop of the world is weird and wild and strange, Good Luck is grounded by its plucky hero Arty Barlow, one of the four teenage Unfortunates. Despite living in miserable circumstances, Arty is oddly resilient and optimistic, adopting a devil-may-care mentality that pushes him to keep trying despite the seemingly impossible odds for completing even the most basic tasks. While his teammates are jaded and cynical from years of no luck and government training, Arty's optimism provides this strange comic with a lot of heart. Arty approaches his predicament with a strange level of determination and cheeriness. It's hard to say whether he's a naturally bright personality or if this is a response to the karmically horrific situation that he finds himself trapped within. Either way, Arty is a great protagonist who keeps the comic interesting and well paced, instead of getting caught up in its cosmic themes.
Stefano Simeone's artwork in Good Luck #1 provides an additional layer of surrealism to the comic, capturing the truly alien nature of these gods of luck and the frantic kinetic energy of Arty and his teammates. One thing I enjoyed in the energy and pace Simeone suffuses into his artwork is that it captures the desperation of the Unfortunates exceedingly well. This is a group of young people seemingly destined to fail, and so that group approaches everything at breakneck speed, trying to outrace an unending karmic catastrophe. Truly astonishing.
In some ways, Good Luck reminds me of a Grant Morrison or Alan Moore comic book on a sugar high. This story tackles some of the same metaphysical themes and concepts you would find in the best, classic Vertigo series, but underlines it with a surprising level of optimism and fun instead of cynicism, dread, or fatalism. The Unfortunates may be destined to fail, but I will be rooting for them regardless. Reading Good Luck #1 will lend you smile as you consider our weird world and the endless possibilities it presents.
Published by Boom Studios
On June 23, 2021
Written by Matthew Erman
Art by Stefano Simeone
Colors by Stefano Simeone
Letters by Mike Fiorentino
Cover by Jorge Corona with Sarah Stern, and Gerard Parel