is an American comic book
An American comic book is a small magazine originating in the United States and containing a narrative in the form of comics. Since 1975 the dimensions have standardized at 6 5/8" x 10 ¼" , down from 6 ¾" x 10 ¼" in the Silver Age, although larger formats appeared in the past...
A limited series is a comic book series with a set number of installments. A limited series differs from an ongoing series in that the number of issues is determined before production and it differs from a one shot in that it is composed of multiple issues....
from Marvel Comics
Marvel Worldwide, Inc., commonly referred to as Marvel Comics and formerly Marvel Publishing, Inc. and Marvel Comics Group, is an American company that publishes comic books and related media...
, written by Cary Bates
Cary Bates is an American comic book, animation television and film writer.-Biography:Bates began submitting ideas for comic book covers to DC Comics at the age of 13, and a number of them were bought and published, the first as the cover to Superman #167...
, with art by Paul Gulacy
Paul Gulacy is an American comic book illustrator best known for his work for DC Comics and Marvel Comics, and for drawing one of the first graphic novels, Eclipse Enterprises' 1978 Sabre: Slow Fade of an Endangered Species, with writer Don McGregor.-Early life and career:Paul Gulacy began...
It is also the name of an obscure group of Spider-Man
Spider-Man is a fictional Marvel Comics superhero. The character was created by writer-editor Stan Lee and writer-artist Steve Ditko. He first appeared in Amazing Fantasy #15...
The series launched as a five part storyline on July 30, 2008
-January:*January 9: Teen Titans: The Lost Annual, delayed since 2003, is published.*January 23: Hellblazer #240, marking the 20th anniversary of the series, is released.-February:...
The four main team members are:
- Payback - Mavis Trent, a S.H.I.E.L.D. data analyst who uses her position to keep the True Believers safe from the Superhuman Registration Act.
Powers - Due to being bonded with an alien symbiote
In the Marvel Comics universe, The Symbiote is a specific parasitic species of extraterrestrial organism...
, Trent is able to transform into a silver skinned energy form. Unlike the Venom alien, this one is sustained when its host is in a state of bliss.
- Headtrip - Tayln Roark , A relationship expert with heightened empathic abilities. Max Trent's former girlfriend and first recruit in the True Believers.
- Red Zone - Theo Bomba, Fringe conspiracy theorist, with heightened mental abilities caused by a lightning strike accidentally fusing his skull with an advanced tin foil hat made alien alloy.
- Battalus - Ozzie Tanaka , Former S.H.I.E.L.D. R&D Scientist. Uses Advanced Battle Armor developed for urban combat. Ozzie also has a form of BPD Borderline Personality Disorder
Borderline personality disorder is a personality disorder described as a prolonged disturbance of personality function in a person , characterized by depth and variability of moods.The disorder typically involves unusual levels of instability in mood; black and white thinking, or splitting; the...
The series involves a team of new characters digging into the background goings-on in the Marvel Universe
The Marvel Universe is the shared fictional universe where most comic book titles and other media published by Marvel Entertainment take place, including those featuring Marvel's most familiar characters, such as Spider-Man, the Hulk, the X-Men, and the Avengers.The Marvel Universe is further...
. The team is led by Payback, Mavis Trent, a S.H.I.E.L.D.
S.H.I.E.L.D. is a fictional espionage and a secret military law-enforcement agency in the Marvel Comics Universe. Created by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby in Strange Tales #135 , it often deals with superhuman threats....
Analysis of data is a process of inspecting, cleaning, transforming, and modeling data with the goal of highlighting useful information, suggesting conclusions, and supporting decision making...
Though a mini-series, True Believers is unusual in that each issue contains a central plot that is resolved by the end. Issue 1 features the team ending an underground fight club. This club is run by rich and powerful men who pay to have women abducted, drugged and forced to fight one another.
The second issue deals with a conspiracy to frame Reed Richards, Mr. Fantastic of the Fantastic Four
The Fantastic Four is a fictional superhero team appearing in comic books published by Marvel Comics. The group debuted in The Fantastic Four #1 , which helped to usher in a new level of realism in the medium...
, for driving under the influence of alcohol. This issue also sees Payback with Reynolds' psychiatrist Dr. Cornelius Worth discussing her feelings with her father.
The third issue reveals the origin of Payback, and begins the search for the murderer of Payback's father.
The fourth gives the origins of Battalus and Red Zone. and reveals there's more to the murder of Payback's Father
The fifth reveals the Truth behind The Murder of Payback's father.
The first issue had estimated sales of 17,151 copies, placing it at number 132 in the sales chart. Issue #2 dropped to an estimate of 12,838 (149th).
has received mixed reviews. For instance, Broken Frontier was less impressed, feeling it didn't live up to expectations suggesting "it is rather disappointing given what one might have hoped for" and that the "tone established by the writing crosses over to the art as well: it shows some nice potential, but fails to realize it fully". However, they also feel that all hope isn't lost and if "Bates and Gulacy really put their minds to it and are willing to push the limits of what they can do with this concept, it just might turn into something very special indeed. Keep an eye out for future issues" Comic Book Resources
Comic Book Resources, also known as CBR is a website dedicated to the coverage of comic book-related news and discussion.-History:Comic Book Resources was founded by Jonah Weiland in 1996 as a development of the Kingdom Come Message Board, a message forum that Weiland had created to discuss DC...
agrees and suggests that the story "is an original and timely concept, but the weak execution doesn't carry it well. Bates' craft seems to be a little rusty at best, and feels more than a little outdated at times" and that problems with the art partly come from script problems as "any artist would struggle to fit 15 panels on one page and still maintain a good flow." Comics Bulletin
Comics Bulletin is a website with an emphasis on the American comic book industry, updated daily with news, reviews, interviews, and editorial content. Coverage ranges from mainstream to independent/small press comic book and graphic novel publishers.-History:...
is largely positive and concludes that "overall this issue presents an interesting if somewhat vague introduction to the characters" with the only downside being the colouring "Beredo does an estimable job but the technique seems so common that it fails to add anything". They stop just shy of awarding full marks to the second issue, largely because the reviewer feels "a certain detachment from the principal character," but the minor niggles about the art in the first issue have been addressed and they declare that they are "prepared to ratchet up my praise for Rain Beredo's colours, too". The online comic book reviewer for Scifipulse.net, Nicholas Yanes, is equally positive, writing that "this is a title that everyone should have on their pull list."
The series will be collected into a trade paperback
In comics, a trade paperback is a collection of stories originally published in comic books, reprinted in book format, usually capturing one story arc from a single title or a series of stories with a connected story arc or common theme from one or more titles...
- True Believers (120 pages, March 2009, ISBN 0-7851-2600-7)