Devil’s Due Comics 2018
Created & Written by Scott Schmidt
Created & Illustrated by Brian Atkins
Coloured by Juancho
Lettered by HdE
An over-the-top gender reversal comic book tribute to beat 'em-up video games like Street Fighter, Double Dragon, and Final Fight. When Sullie's boyfriend Franklin is kidnapped by the vicious Bare Knucklers gang, she and her best friend Kumi hit the deadly streets of Transit City to rescue him. Little do they know they're about to stumble into a much bigger fight.
Alright since this is self-described as such this is perfectly done in that regard. I found this to be all kinds of fun, it’s well written and it’s interesting to see how the personalities work so well with the gender reversal. Now I wouldn’t call this so much as an homage, though it could be seen like that, I think of it more as a love letter to the franchises of their youth. I will admit that when I saw the cover for this I thought okay this might be a train wreck but I am so happy to have been proven wrong. This is a brightly coloured extremely fun comic book version of a video game and it works exceptionally well.
I like the way that this is structured there’s a great flow to the book and it easily gives us a look at the main characters in a way that doesn’t require us to have background information added. While we seem to be jumping right into the thick of it it doesn’t feel like I am missing anything. I like that about this, it just proves to me how well I consider this to be written. There is also the characterisation here that is very easy to recognise who is who and how the dialogue fits their personalities. I also like the way that it helps the story move forward its a nice integration.
I really liked the surprise, well for me it was as I went into this completely blind, about Sullie’s boyfriend being the one who was abducted. Even better is that the fact that I have no idea why. There’s a nice mystery surrounding Franklin and why these Bare Knucklers were sent to retrieve him. I like it Scott has managed to really elevate this story in ways that are both entertaining and actually have a very strong story behind it. I hate to sound shocked but most of the titles that are similar to this really are a lot of cheesecake moments surrounded by fighting so to see a strong story woven into the action sequences.
I am huge fan of the interiors here. Their vibrancy has an infectious quality to it that just draws you in and makes you a part of things. The linework is exceptionally well utilised through their varying weights. There is some really nice attention to detail whether it is in the camo colouring or the braids in Sullie’s hair. The utilisation of the page layouts and how we see the angles and perspective in the panels shows off a great eye for storytelling. One thing however is there are too few backgrounds being utilised, when we see the streets or the subway train those are the moments that expand the story beautifully and I wish we had more of that.
If you are a fan of the rock em sock one on one video game franchises then you’ll really enjoy this offering. However if you aren’t then you really need to check this out anyway because it’s way past high time that the man is kidnapped and his woman is off to save him and hope to god he’s worth it. Plus her best mate is by her side and these two put the macho pairings to shame.
Fun, quirky and extremely entertaining this is one that’s more than worthy of your attention.