Sideways Vol. 1 Review

Written By: Dan DiDio & Justin Jordan

Art By: Carmine Giandomenico, Robert Gill, Kenneth Rocafort

Published By: DC Comics

At first glance, you may think it’s just another goofy Marvel spin-off if you don’t notice the big ol’ DC logo on the cover. If you do, then you may also probably think Sideways is a poorly thought out Spider-Man rip-off if you’re just basing it off the costume design. However, outside of the costume similarities, Sideways is anything but.

After high school sophomore, Derek James fell through a rift leading to the dark matter dimension thanks to the events of Dark Nights: Metal, he gained the ability to open and step through a rift to anywhere he wants. After discovering his powers he decides to employ his best friend, Ernestine to make him a dope looking costume and then, decides to stream his abilities on the internet. His shenanigans piss off a cosmic entity and things quickly go south however and Sideways finds himself thrust into a life of danger and super hero-ing.

What I like about Sideways is that he doesn’t really seem to “get” the super hero profession. He starts off basically doing it for the fame and he almost certainly underestimates his opponents. At one point he tries to just…. rift into a battle taking place and rift the villain out as if it would be that easy to do. He’s still learning how to use his rift’s and at one point in the beginning someone even loses a limb due to his negligence. He has a flawed idea of how to be a super hero and he’s only looking for fame in the beginning of his journey.

What I don’t like about Sideways is that at times, there’s an unnecessary amount of exposition. Take his first villain Killspeed for instance. She’s introduced attacking doctors in a hospital. After Sideways manages to get her out, the evil speedster goes into a somewhat lengthy explanation on how she became evil because she couldn’t afford the treatments for her leukemia and her speed is basically killing her. It slows the pacing of the book down but the following battle does show how Sideways is learning about his abilities which is nice.

I like the art work for the most part. The world looks good with a lot of details put into the backgrounds and the action is a lot of fun. In the first 4 issues however, all the characters look like they’ve been deprived of sleep for a week. Everyone’s bottom eyelids are shaded in giving the effect of bags under their eyes. This thankfully changes by issue #5 though and everyone starts looking a whole lot better(and rested). I do have to say though, Sideways has a really cool looking costume and if I’m being honest, Sideways and a certain villain I won’t name to avoid spoilers are both beautifully illustrated characters.

Truth be told, Sideways is a decent comic book. It’s easy to see where people find the similarities to Derek and Peter Parker but overall, Sideways isn’t much of a Spider-Man aside from looks. He’s young, reckless and incredibly naive but plenty of super heroes were before they achieved great things and saved the world. The biggest hurdle for readers is getting passed the rough character designs. If you can do that then you’ll find it’s a rather enjoyable book.