“Geiger” is the latest comic book series from Image Comics. It combines elements of several genres set in a unique environment featuring a fascinating protagonist who is both a monster and a loving family man. A character-driven story taking place in a post-apocalyptic world, “Geiger” is unlike anything yet seen in a comic book or graphic novel.
“Geiger” is mainly sci-fi, but it also contains elements of westerns, action, humor, and family drama. Creator Geoff Johns was influenced by Marvel and DC comics and classic films such as “Mad Max” and “True Grit”. Combining his writing with the stunning artwork of illustrator Gary Frank, Johns has managed to connect disparate elements in ways not seen before in a comic series.
“Geiger” is centered around the sole mission of the titular character: to protect his family at all costs. Johns and Frank have created a world based in the Nevada desert outside of Las Vegas after a nuclear event known as the “Unknown War”. Due to fallout, the outside world is not inhabitable unless one wears a hazmat suit. Geiger’s wife and children are inside a shelter, waiting for the day when it’s safe to emerge. Geiger’s body has absorbed a large amount of radiation and has been altered. He is able to survive in the outdoor wasteland, where he stands vigil, protecting his family against those who wish to break into the shelter.
Geiger’s body rages with raw nuclear power. He wears a costume that bears two rods that contain the forces within, much like the carbon rods in a nuclear reactor. When Geiger removes the rods, his body glows and his face takes on the appearance of a skull, turning him into a monster with enormous strength and power. He uses this power to combat numerous enemies, ranging from scavengers to mutated insects to casino bosses seeking power. When in full nuclear form, Geiger is frightening and violent. Classic Marvel comic characters such as The Thing and the Hulk influenced the creators.
Heart at the Core
Though violent with plenty of action and a truly scary protagonist, “Geiger” is the story of an everyman and has plenty of heart. Geiger’s only concern is to keep his family safe. He uses his power only to stop those who attempt to break into the shelter, putting his wife and children in harm’s way. Using the power of words and pictures, the creators clearly show the love and devotion this man has for his family. It is this core element that helps the reader become invested in the protagonist and his story. Geiger is a man who many can relate to and root for.
Writer Geoff Johns has an impressive background writing for DC comics as well as serving as an executive in several roles. He is also a screenwriter and film producer, working on many DC universe movies. Illustrator Gary Frank is a British artist who has drawn several popular Marvel and DC titles.
For those who enjoy action, humor, and a unique and sympathetic character, “Geiger” may be just your cup of tea.