Corinna Bechko (writer), Jonathan Lau (illustrator), Vincius Andrade (colorer), Simon Bowland (letterer), Tula Lotay (cover)
June 1, 2016
Since issue #4 of this five-issue run isn’t set to drop until July 27, I took my time reviewing this one. (You believe that, right?) Anyway, in issue #3, we further delve into Miss Fury’s origins as she attempts to figure out why the bad guys want to steal her ship blueprints. Also, there’s some evil cult stuff going on, which is always a bonus in my book.
One lovely thing about the extended time frame for writing this review is an opportunity to draw out Bechko’s and Lau’s too-short run on this comic. While issue #1 got my excited for this story and issue #2 intrigued me with the new take on Marla’s origins, issue #3 has solidified my love for this comic by making the horror elements explicit.
Miss Fury is mostly known as a “pulp” heroine. Pulp is a broad term based on pulp magazines, which emerged as “cheap alternatives to the ‘slick’ more expensive magazines of the early twentieth century.” Pulp magazines generally included genre fiction with a “sensational focus on violence, sex, drugs, and the like…” (You can read more the origins of pulp magazines by clicking here.) Thus, a pulp heroine generally means a delightfully lurid (and, of course, not always delightful) female lead character who can fit into science fiction stories, noir, westerns, fantasy, and so on. The original Miss Fury was very much in the style of 1940s noir, but one of the great things about pulp is how much these genres cross over with one another in spectacular ways. In Miss Fury #3, Bechko and Lau play with this mash-up more explicitly. There’s demonic cults! Horned and hooved monsters! And all kinds of pulpy, horrorific goodness, but don’t take my word for it, look at this page:
Lau does interesting work with smaller panels layered over dynamic scenes like the one above. During a fight scene, Miss Fury is shown with differing outlines and hues to indicate rapid, action-packed movement, all in a single panel. It’s a scene that indicates a great moment of synchronicity between writer, illustrator, and colorist. I love when it is evident that creators have a love for the genre, and the whole team seems to be having fun on this comic.
The final third of the comic is mostly an extended action sequence, and this is not a complaint. Action and gore go hand-in-hand in pulp comics to the point of gratuity, which again isn’t always a bad thing, but in some cases heads straight into mindlessness. Fortunately, this is not the case in Miss Fury #3. The cohesion between the creative team results in an extended action scene that you don’t get to see female characters in too often. There’s hand-to-hand fighting, hits on both sides, lots of bold onomatopoeia sound effects, and a decent amount of bloodshed that all makes for a fun romp.
The ending, however, did feel a bit sudden. In ongoing comics, transitions between single issues seem to be some of the hardest things to master. In some cases, it just makes it easier to wait and read in trade, but some creators have the single issue transition down pat. So far, the endings for this series have managed to make the transition clear enough, but this one actually left me wondering if I had a faulty advanced review. I look forward to seeing the next issue pick up exactly where this one left off, but it was a jarring transition, nonetheless.
In next month’s issue, we learn more about Marla’s past, and I had to share the cover by Tula Lotay:
Gorgeous, no? See you next issue.