ComiXology Originals 2019
Written by Alex Segura & Monica Gallagher
Illustrated by George Kambadais
Coloured by Ellie Wright
Lettered & Designed by Taylor Esposito of Ghost Glyph Studios
The city is abuzz about a mysterious new vigilante - claiming to be the new Black Ghost! But can Lara keep her new side gig a secret as she quickly realizes that the tentacles of the Creighton underworld fight back? Ragged and desperate, Lara must call every ounce of her reserves to uncover the truth behind the mysterious figure pulling the strings of the city's criminal landscape - and what they really want.
There is something interesting and ballsy to pass the mantle of the Black Mask to an alcoholic like Lara. Sure she followed him around and reported on his actions that was her beat and to step in when Ernesto was in trouble gained her a life long friend in him. Getting sacked and all her drunken celebrating her new identity, yeah that was smart, continues to demonstrate just how far her downward spiral is continuing to go. Will she be able to pull herself long enough to make a difference or will her dual identity be done before it even get a chance to really start?
I like the way that this is being told. It has a smart edgy take to the super hero genre that is as unexpected as it gets. The story & plot development as we seen through how the sequence of events unfold as well as how the reader learns information is really nice to see. The character development that we see is phenomenal. We see Lara going through so many different phases in this single issue and it's not just her either, Ernesto, Maggie and even that “old friend” of hers all of them get their moments to be seen and understood, well mostly. The pacing is great and as it takes us through the pages we see how the twists and turns come at us all and how everything creates that ebb & flow which we enjoy so much.
There are a few things that we see this issue that I saw coming the moment it happened. I mean c'mon now blondie is a good person. Lone is the only enigma here and I have my own sneaky suspicion on who it is but I am probably wrong still it's one of those things that keep us coming back for more. Mainly we want to know, though knowing isn't always what we need so that identity can remain anonymous. There is someone else in this city that's pulling strings and whether Lone is that person or knows who it is that whole ordeal with the setup well that should've set off alarm bells more than it did. So should Ernesto ending up where he does, these are messages and whether it's realised or not this is way above her league.
Yes the interiors may be simple and backgrounds need a lot more attention but they still remain cute. Attention to detail could be utilised more as well because what I am seeing doesn't always add up and some brickwork in the buildings we see would go a long way in making it feel more alive rather than a colourforms backdrop. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels show the storytelling eye here. The colour work is a bit flat as well. It feels simple and even when there are moments when it tries to show weathering or age it feels one dimensional. Though I do love the page where Lara breaks in the conversation is seen in a broken glass pattern and that kind of originality is what I would love to see throughout.
I cannot wait to see how this is going to play out next issue. Was Lara giving Molly a clue when she left? Will Lone show itself or is there another trick up Lara's sleeve to get herself out of this and still somehow manage to save the day? Who knows and if I am honest I am not sure which direction if any I prefer I am more interested in seeing what we're going to get from these guys. I love this book, strengths and flaws in all of it is what makes the world go round.