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Man Power by Matthew O'Keefe

Man Power

Birth of the Supermen

by Matthew O'Keefe

Pub Date: Aug. 17th, 2016
ISBN: 978-1-4602-9171-9
Publisher: FriesenPress

Nazis hide out in the Bermuda Triangle after World War II and groom supersoldiers for an eventual strike against the United States in O’Keefe’s (Man Power: Strikes Back, 2016, etc.) graphic novel.

A Nazi military branch called the Iron Cross is so secret that not even Adolf Hitler is aware of it. Still, the Allies manage to track down its base and launch an assault in 1943. Some Nazis escape in U-boats, however, along with their first generation of cloned (but still infant) supersoldiers. They set up a new base at a covert German compound off the Bermuda coast, where a lieutenant assumes command by shoving a dagger into another officer’s chest. One of the supersoldier babies, meanwhile, remains on a sub with its captain, who initially intends to go down with his ship to dispose of any evidence of clones. He opts instead to save the child and, with nowhere else to go, heads to Antarctica. The war ends, but as the years pass, the Iron Cross officers attack in various ways, including by mysteriously causing aircraft to disappear over the Bermuda Triangle. In America, a general attempts to shut down a similar cloning experiment, but a doctor tries to convince him to reconsider. In 2022, the Nazis finally initiate a full-scale assault, but the government of the United States, where superhumans have become commonplace, may be ready. O’Keefe aptly fuses his sci-fi tale with real-life events; in this version of history, Nazis had a hand in numerous incidents, such as London’s Great Smog of 1952. There’s no real protagonist and few named characters in the story, but this allows the plot to span decades and cover a broad range of countries. Some elements may be expanded upon in additional series (such as the fate of the clone in Antarctica), but the jump to the 21st century may make readers feel like something’s missing. O’Keefe’s illustrations resemble sketches and seem more like storyboards than polished artwork. He does, however, gleefully cram the panels with action, wasting no space in his visualization of his story.

An exuberant, historically charged tale that practically demands further installments.