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The Stand: Hardcases issue 1

Trade collection

Where the last series focused on Abigail's camp, this one brings the focus to Flagg's army. This issue focuses on one in particular, one of my favorite characters, the Trashcan man.

It chronicles his journey as he makes his way to Flagg, who has promised him great things. Interestingly enough, he does (in a way) cross paths with Mother Abigail during his trek. Not only does he not care for her, but she seems to reject him when she senses his presence in a dream.

The issue is very narration heavy for the first half, which makes it a little difficult to develop the character, though we do get some background information on him as a result. It isn't until he crosses paths with "the kid" that we are allowed to get a better glimpse into his personality.

You can't help but roll your eyes when the Kid reveals his intention to oust Flagg from power. It ends about as well as you'd think it would. While it makes perfect sense for Flagg to dispose of him immediately, part of me did want to see him make it to Nevada, just so that we could see what his big plan was and watch it fail in spectacular fashion.

The comic is a fairly smooth read, but it does contain some rather silly imagery. You'd be hard pressed not to chuckle at the picture of Trashcan Man's head on the body of a weasel. I know Abigail referred to him as a weasel, but I don't know if using the literal image was the way to go.

I'm also not sure about Flagg's choice in cloak. Yeah, red goes with the fiery image he presents and it would appeal to a pyro like Trash, but it didn't so much look foreboding as it made him look like Little Red Riding Hood.

Overall, it's a decent read. We get an introduction to a fun character and we see what Flagg does to those who attempt to stand against him. With Trash as the newcomer, it makes for a nice gateway to introducing the people who decided to plant their flag with Flagg.

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