A bit of humor, a bit of nostalgia, and a bit of mythology. Dave Gibbon and John Higgins's update of the old Albion character Thunderbolt Jaxon is a fun Goonies-style adventure.
Thunderbolt Jaxon opens with a scene reminiscent of MacBeth, with three old persons of indiscriminate gender reciting an insane and cryptic poetry. Some people would say William Shakespeare knows a bit about writing, and Gibbons's allusion here draws on that strength to create a wonderfully sinister atmosphere. Next thing that happens is some kids come into the mix. Excellent. They unearth some ancient artifacts to get the plot rolling in earnest. From here on it's a bit of character introduction, including what looks to be the big bad guys, and of course the dramatic reveal. The issue is very enjoyable throughout, but the drama really comes from that opening scene, making everything matter. Well done.
Higgin's art is fantastically eerie, though at times characters in motion come off a bit posed. The domestic violence scene suffers most notably from this, particularly since the scene itself is dropped in abruptly and feels over the top. Other sights, though, are truly moving, as when our team of misfits runs along the shore, and when the hoary old tree is lit up from the sky. Boom, great stuff.