In Review: Red Agent #2

This is the best Zenescope comic available. Recommended.

The covers: A fivesome to find before they disappear. The first cover, the A, is from Edgar Salazar and Erick Arciniega. It’s a movie poster quality image of Britney and Avril with guns and swords, ready for action. Behind the pair emerges an oversized portrait of hacker Ditto; on the side of his head is the input holes so he can jack into a computer. This is an awesome image and definitely print worthy. The B cover hails from Caio Cacau and features Britney doing her best impersonation of Roger Moore as James Bond, reenacting the poster to For Your Eyes Only. This book’s star is doing her best Bond, while Alpha’s legs are substituting for the legs of Carole Bouquet. It’s very cool, but I prefer Bouquet’s gams, thank you. A taste of Tom Cruise from the Mission Impossible film comes in on the C cover from Michael Dooney and Ivan Nunes. This features Britney wearing black, hanging upside down from a wire, with guns blazing at an unseen foe. This is a slick action shot, making me hopeful that this pair will return for further covers. The D is by Diego Galindo and Grostieta, who are the interior artist and colorist, respectively, for this series. This is an awesome shot of Alpha holding up the severed head of a wolf. Yeah, this makes Alpha look like an unstoppable villain. The final cover is the London Super Con Exclusive, limited to 250 copies, and illustrated by Sabine Rich. This was the cover I chose to accompany this review as it’s a beautiful illustration of Britney as a member of the Scots Guards, complete with iconic hat, though she’s not wearing too much else associated with those men. I love this cover. Overall grades: A A, B A, C A, D A+, and LSCE A+

The story: In a Las Vegas alley, Britney has tried to defend hacker Ditto from the all-powerful Alpha. Their fight didn’t last long. She’s unconscious, he’s looking on helplessly, and Alpha merely says, “Don’t bother running off, Ditto. This will be quick.” A blast of luminescent violet energy hits the assassin in the back, diverting his attention. Avril, of the recent Coven miniseries, has arrived on the scene and she has a score to settle with the man that killed her sister witches. She doesn’t seem up to snuff, however, as Alpha makes quick work of her. Before he can deliver a killing blow, Britney has awoken, transformed into a wolf-like creature. She savagely rips off her foe’s right arm, causing him to call for backup and escape. The two women make a reluctant compact to discuss what’s going on and search for the, once again, missing Ditto. Writer Lou Iovino, going from a story conceived by himself, Joe Brusha, and Ralph Tedesco, start this issue up strongly and never relent. The story goes to captive Eve, Ditto in a new safe house, Alpha’s reemergence on the scene, and the two leads tracking the hacker. For all that occurs, nothing feels rushed: everything plays out for as long as it needs to before moving to another’s story. This is expert storytelling that doesn’t waste any time. It’s exciting to read a story that knows how to be paced, without being an all issue fight. Overall grade: A

The art: Coven made me a fan of Diego Galindo’s work and this series is cementing that position. The arrival of Avril on the scene is absolutely magical: it’s not over the top, it’s subtle, with her levitating ever so slightly off the ground. When he zooms in on her for the bottom panel of the first page she looks incredibly powerful and focused; and I love the earring she’s sporting. When Alpha fights back on Page 2, their confrontation is given a huge amount of space and it’s deserved for what Galindo shows. This conflict looks awesome, but Galindo keeps the incredible imagery flowing with Britney’s transformation and brutal attack on Alpha. When the two women face each other in the fourth panel on Page 5 their expressions tell the reader perfectly how each feels at the moment. The resolution of the character in the final panel on 6 shows the reader an expression that telegraphs what the individual’s choice will be. The scene involving Eve is startling and perfectly drawn. The position that Eve is placed in when Alpha is made whole is wonderfully symbolic, and completely out of place for the setting: marvelous! The final five pages show Britney and Avril working together and the looks they give each other and how they react to their situation are excellent. This book looks great. Overall grade: A

The colors: When Avril shoots a blast of supernatural energy at Alpha, Grostieta handsomely employs a wondrous, unearthly violet that seethes magical. When shown in close-up at the bottom of Page 1 it’s impossible for a reader not to feel excited. Placing Britney in a blood red costume makes her stand out in every panel she appears in, and combined with glowing eyes, she’s a beautiful fright. There’s a lighting effect on Page 4 that’s very realistic and it gives the page a very threatening tone. When Ditto goes “Down the friggin’ rabbit hole!” the colors are exactly the green mechanical looking shades one associates with computer technology. Grostieta provides the pulse of this book. Overall grade: A

The letters: Fabio Amelia provides dialogue, scene settings, screams, yells, editorial notes, signage, online texts, a GPS response, and the tease for next issue. Amelia is one of the many fantastic letterers working for Zenescope that uses a vast array of fonts to make this publisher the issuer of the best lettered books in the industry. Each font suits the text perfectly and adds just the right visual punch to each panel. I wish other companies allowed their letterers loose like Zenescope does. Overall grade: A+

The final line: An exciting tale told sensationally with outstanding visuals. This is the best Zenescope comic available, in my humble opinion. Recommended. Overall grade: A

 

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer's Guide for several years with "It's Bound to Happen!" and he's reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He's taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.
No Comment

RELATED BY

Subscribe to Blog via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 2,515 other subscribers