Written by Jeremy Haun and Jason A. Hurley and Drawn by Jeremy Haun
Written by Jeff Lemire and Drawn by Emi Lenox
Published by Image Comics
Reviewed by Marc Mason
Two new terrific debuts to take a look at…
As the year begins to take its final lap and we start building best-of lists, I suspect that THE BEAUTY #1 will make more than a few. I know it’s going to make mine.
What a concept!
Two years ago, a new sexually transmitted disease called “The Beauty” appeared, and this one has starling side effects: it physically changes its victims, getting rid of fat, baldness, wrinkles, bad skin, the whole nine yards. Essentially it delivers physical perfection, and the only side effect is the running of a constant fever. As you might imagine, many people went out and got the disease on purpose, while many others have rebelled against this unnatural change. There is division within society over it… and that’s just the setup.
Here in issue one, we meet a pair of detectives assigned to what initially is reported as a bombing, but turns out to be much more. What has happened involves The Beauty, and to tell you more would be a disservice. Just rest assured that it involves action, terrorism, and a highly unfortunate moment for both of our cops.
Great science fiction always tells us about our current society, and THE BEAUTY definitely does just that. It brings up issues of body image, sexual choice, fears about the modern terrorist state, and does so in interesting and unique ways. The scripting by Jeremy Haun and Jason A. Hurley is tight, the dialogue rings with truth, and Haun’s art is quite lovely, telling the story in an effective and impactful way. As soon as I finished reading it, I went right back and read it again, because I immediately wanted more and that was the best I could do at the time. I give this book my highest recommendation.
Sometimes it’s an unusual creative pairing that catches your eye, and that’s the case with PLUTONA #1, which is written by Jeff Lemire and drawn by Emi Lenox. Lemire has been spreading his wings quite a bit as a writer over the last few years, so it’s no surprise to see his name top-lining a new release. But we haven’t seen a whole lot from the always terrific Lenox lately, so it’s is a happy thing to see her at the artistic helm of a new creator-owned work.
It doesn’t hurt that’s it’s rather good, either.
The book opens up with a quick page of mystery before diving in to what looks to be our primary cast: four young kids with wildly varying family backgrounds who are somewhat friendly with one another. One day after school, their paths intersect, and in the process they discover something in the woods involving the superheroine known as Plutona.
More mystery follows.
Rich in characters – Lemire’s dialogue sounds like he recorded it on a playground – and gorgeously drawn, PLUTONA gets off to a strong start, whetting the reader’s appetite and making them want more.