The thing I remember most about the 1991 Disney film The Rocketeer was Jennifer Connelly's incredible hotness, and her picture perfect casting as a 1940s heroine. I do vaguely remember that the movie itself wasn't too bad either. It never garnered a sequel even though it was a less violent and dark Indiana Jones type of 1930s serial homage that had a great look, feel, and fun story. Based off of the now defunct Pacific Comics original back up stories for Mike Grell's Starslayer by Dave Stevens, The Rocketeer, as recently mentioned by fellow ComicBookBin writer Phillip Schweier in Rocketeer Relaunch?, has developed a "rabid fan base" and is currently being considered for getting the reboot treatment by Disney. That rabid fan base will be happy to see that The Rocketeer is getting a new lease on life in comics as well, and none other than the hottest creative team in comics right now is handling the writing and artistic duties. Yes, Mark Waid and Chris Samnee are writing and drawing IDW Publishing's The Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom.
The story opens with Cliff Secord/The Rocketeer having to save the life of his long term airplane mechanic friend Peabody's niece Sally from near certain death by way of aviation accident. Later on, we're introduced to the series bad guys who are bringing a certain deadly cargo into the Los Angeles harbor. Bad guys with past ties to our hero. Meanwhile, Cliff's long term girlfriend, Betty is beginning to suspect that Peabody's niece has feelings for Cliff...and she's not too happy about it!
Setting up a story that will smartly unfold over the course of the series, as well as showing us The Rocketeer in action, Waid and Samnee bring to life the fun, 1940s nostalgic, and serial-like adventure that defines The Rocketeer's appeal as a character and story. A little more violent than I expected in spots, The Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom is nonetheless great fun. Waid's Sally is the most fun and interesting of the characters presented in issue #1 and will undoubtedly drive the series, along with (of course) the stylized action that defines The Rocketeer genre. Waid and Samnee are a match made in sequential art heaven, and Samnee's use of a muted color scheme helps create a dusty 1940s feel.
Fun pre-WWII adventure of the highest caliber since Indiana Jones last appeared in comics, The Rocketeer: Cargo of Doom looks to be a hit for IDW Publishing and a treat for fans of both The Rocketeer and this type of stylized action and adventure.