Invasion From Planet Wrestletopia #1
Written by: Ed Kuehnel and Matt Entin
Art by: Dan Schkade
Published by: Suspicious Behavior Productions

Reviewed by: Ryan McLelland

Invasion From Planet Wrestletopia is such a weird and wonderful comic book. I’m going to admit from the get-go that I am not a wrestling fan. I watched the WWF back in the 80’s when they had Iron Sheik, Roddy Piper, and Andre the Giant but the closest I’ve come to watching wrestling in the past years was watching Mickey Rourke in The Wrestler.

Invasion From Planet Wrestletopia #1 focuses on a rundown old wrestler named Rory Landell who is way past his prime. The book flashes back and shows us what it was like when Rory was on top of the wrestling world. He had it all but he truly was an arrogant prick. At least at that time he was a rich one. He’s so arrogant that he is self-destructive to himself and his career. Rory thinks wrestling can’t survive without him.  He’s wrong.

Now he’s down to his last nickel wrestling midgets (and losing).  What’s an old wrestler to do?  Drink his life away and die? That’s pretty much the case for Rory. His career should be done forever but this isn’t the case. This is because high above in a spaceship, an alien has been watching television transmissions from Earth.

The transmission the alien picked up was one where Rory was proclaiming himself wrestling’s new Galactic Champion of the Universe. The problem is this transmission was picked up by an alien from the planet Wrestletopia. It sounds like a fun planet where all they do is wrestle and when word gets back that there is a Galactic Champion of the Universe on Earth, it literally means war. LET’S GET IT ON!!!

I thought there was some good and bad with the issue. There’s much more good than bad here. The comic is able to present Rory’s story quite definitively. By the end of issue 1 you really have gotten to know the man, his attitude, his plight, and his arrogance. Writers Matt Entin and Ed Kuehnel do a wonderful job in showing us how far this wrestler has fallen. Dan Schkade’s art is pretty great and makes this first issue gorgeous.

The bad here is small but I think it is worth noting.  The story of Rory takes over issue #1 to the point where you know almost nothing about Wrestletopia, its champion, and what an entire world of wrestlers look like. The actual comic clocks in at 32 pages so there is a TON of story here.

I just felt a bit off-putting that, with 32 pages of story, the antagonists are barely mentioned. In indie comics I think that is a bold move. Sometimes in indie comics you never know when your next issue is coming. While I’m reviewing this book now, issue one actually came out in September 2017.  Meaning it has been 5 months since the first issue has come out with the second issue having not yet arrived.

So while there is a solid story in issue one, I think trimming Rory’s story just a bit or moving some of that exposition to the second issue would have benefitted the book overall so we can see more of these alien wrestlers and why some human proclaiming himself Champion means so much to them. What I will say is that I’m interested to see where this book goes and look forward to the alien wrestlers coming to Earth.

Is this book just for wrestling fans? No. I’m not a wrestling fan and I had a good time with the book. I’d say wrestling fans may get more of a kick from the book but you don’t need to know who The Undertaker is to have a good time with Invasion From Planet Wrestletopia.  It’s a great comic with a very fun setup.  I do really hope that issue #2 delivers the goods.

RATING: B

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