Image Comics 2017
Written by Gail Simone
Illustrated by Cat Staggs
Lettered by Simon Bowland
Well I wasn’t sure what to expect from this one. All I knew was that it was Gail and Cat and that was enough for me to know I was in. I’ve kind of given up reading Previews because I like not knowing ahead of time what’s going to happen in the books I read. As much as a great tool for ordering it is it does spoil a bit too much for me. So this turned into such a treat for me because it was different, engaging and visually stunning.
I’m talk about Cat first because let’s face it that’s really the first thing we notice when we open up a book. The interior artwork here was nothing like I could have been expecting. It’s so gosh darn good that I was seriously just staring not even reading for a bit. While it did leave me with a few comparisons in my head, kind of between Greg Land and Alex Ross, the way she was able to bring these characters to life and then in the snowy landscape instantly I was in love with this book. The utilisation of page layouts through their angles, perspective and use of backgrounds was so on point.
Not to be outdone Gail’s characterisation here was fascinating, uncomfortable and everything in-between. Seriously I loved the opening because it set the tone for the entire issue. We open with the introduction to Carson who is a hitman and he’s on a job and the dialogue, mood and tone of the conversation will make you sit up and take notice. Gail does a superb job in bringing us into his life, his lifestyle and to the people that are currently in his life and have some importance.
Then we are introduced to Juniper who’s a stepmom and apparently a MILF. so uch of one that part of her introduction made me as uncomfortable as all get out, why because A. I would never speak to a woman that way and B. not being a woman I have no idea if that even truly happens. That Gail wrote that to demonstrate how she’s spoken to and how those experiences, alongside her interactions with her husband and stepson, have broken her down to such a point in her life is amazing.
So what significance do these two vastly different characters have to one another? Well it’s surprisingly simple, but you’ll have to read the book to really see. What I like about what I just read is in the descriptions of their lives we see the possibilities of what could happen now that this issue ended in the manner it did.
Honestly I cannot wait to see where Gail’s going to take this as one gets to explore her inner book lover, living the lives of characters in novels that she has read is a dream for her and now it could be more. She could have her chance to realize a life that doesn’t make her cower in the corner or make her feel like she’s worthless. The chance to explore someone like that and change how she sees herself and how we see her well that’s got to be a writer’s dream come true.
This is an unexpected type of reading experience. Beautifully written and illustrated it expertly explores two vastly different people. This is a home run book from these ladies, and gentleman.