Sunday, January 19, 2014


Quickie reviews, that is.

Noir 3
Aside from having a hard time telling Miss Fury and the Black Sparrow apart when they're out of costume -- now which one has the long curls, again? -- the book is rather entertaining. The art is suitable for the era and noirish setting, even if the two dark-haired women look too much alike, and the story about missing treasure is moving along at a leisurely but intriguing pace. Having two female kick-ass characters team up despite being antagonistic toward each other, makes for fun reading, especially with the male characters reduced to supporting roles.

Astro City 8
The plot against Winged Victory deepens, with officials starting to shut down her women's support centers and threatening her ability to continue as a superhero. A nice story arc about female empowerment is about to enter the battle phase! The art is lovely, too.

Legenderry 1
Another title with a kick-ass female character, and in a steampunk tale, at that! I'm loving this trend and I hope these books do well so more books like this will be published. Sure, this will feature male characters, too, with Green Hornet and Kato promised for the next issue. A woman searching for her missing sister barges into the Scarlet Club with assassins on her heels, only to have the club's owner, Madam Pendragon dispatch them efficiently and bloodily. The discovery that the dead assassins are completely identical, including the scars on their faces, is the first clue to the mystery that will assuredly unfold over the following issues. With Bill Willingham ("The Best Selling Writer of Fables" as proclaimed on the cover!) at the helm, this promises to be a solid tale, and I've yet to see him mishandle female characters. Artist Sergio Davila does a nice job.

Velvet 3
Damn, I love this book. Velvet's search for the truth behind Agent X-14's death, the first step in clearing herself of being framed for treason, takes her behind the Iron Curtain, to Belgrade. Ed Brubaker is another male writer who does a good job with strong female leads as well as being able to write some of the best mysteries and intrigue in comics. Here he captures the paranoia of the Cold War and gives us an amazing character in Velvet, a woman in her early 40s forced to return to the fieldwork she'd given up. A bit rusty, she's up for the challenge. Steve Epting's art is dark and nuanced, realistic without being too much so, if that makes any sense. Image has quickly become my favorite comics publisher with this, Saga, and Lazarus.

Shadow Now 4
The art in this is very realistic, looking like paintings. Dark and brooding, it suits the noir aspects of the Shadow's world, even though he's operating in our present. Margo is a descendant of the original Margo Lane, and while as feisty as her relative, she's a modern woman and not hesitant to question the Shadow's actions. This chapter is mostly about setting the pieces in play for the big showdown between the Shadow and his longtime enemy Khan.

Miss Fury 8
Miss Fury has to save the version of herself in the timeline she's stuck in. Trying to keep track of the timey wimey stuff in this book can give me a headache, but if I don't think too much about it, it's quite enjoyable.

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