Sam Thorne reviews Jinnrise Vol. 1…
“International student Andrew Marcus’ world is torn asunder when interstellar forces, the “Kibrani,” invade earth. With all hope seemingly lost, humanity’s last chance may be a long-despised and forgotten race: the Jinn (otherwise known as “genies”)! But are they our hope… or greatest fear?”
So simply put Jinnrise is the story of aliens versus djinn (genies) as a technologically equine-like race known as the Kibrani begin to attack earth. Things seem bleak for Andrew, but a young boy called Yunus saves him with the help of an incredibly powerful genie known as Jabal. Throughout Jinnrise Vol.1 (originally printed as issues #1-2, #4-6) man and Jinn are forced to co-operate once again as the Kibrani begin to strike with increasing force. Not only do we follow the gang as the Jinn/Kibrani war heats up, but we’re also treated to interested snippets of history, detailing how the once feared and powerful race of the Jinn were entrapped and enslaved to humanity.
The art style is rather cartoony, and generally quite basic, but it suits the lore-based tale of Jinnrise. The Kibrani are perhaps a little over the top, Trojan-horse things with advanced space age weaponry, but it kind of works. The science/mysticism ideology clash works quite well though. The Jinn are pretty well designed if not a little over muscled, and the back story is incredibly well written. The kids aren’t so important. They’re basically just vehicles to drive the storyline forward, like the very original series of the Transformers. The story is pretty much what you expect. Each encounter, both sides fight a little harder and there are clear hints that they need to find other Jinn to help fight the gathering forces of the Kibrani.
As solid as the art and the story is, its not really the main appeal of Jinnrise. It’s much more about the fun of the comic, the huge, fun battle scenes and the fairly good pacing. Jinnrise does a good job of keeping you entertained, managing to maintain that fine balance of action and story. Regardless of a few minor criticisms, Jinnrise is pretty good. It may not be the most engrossing graphic novel ever, and it certainly won’t blow you away, but its a fun story that’s worth a read. That’s more of what you expect with IDW. A good understanding of story, and pacing, some solid art, and generally an entertaining book. If you’re vaguely interested in the plot, a mystical clash of genies versus galactic invaders I’d suggest giving it a try.