Gail Williams reviews issue 1 of Scarlett Couture...
Beautiful girls, secret agents, guns, kidnappings, explosions, mysterious men on luxury yatchs - It's James Bond, right?
Long haired bad guys with head bands - It's Die Hard, right?
The beautiful girl clad in tight black leather is the secret agent - It's Emma Peel, right?
Wrong. (Though I kind of wish)
This is Scarlett Carver.
Scarlett Carver is head of Security for Chase Couture, a fashion house run by Chase Carver - Scarlett's mother. This is also a cover for more covert activities. Scarlett is a highly talented, overly trained gorgeous redhead who plays fast and loose with teamwork, ignoring instructions to act alone.
This first instalment of Scarlett's story starts with a slap in the face - literally. Kind of ends with one too.
Scarlett is strong and ballsy and capable. She's cool under pressure and good with a gun - when she has bullets. Of course, when she does run out of bullets, she's saved by her chiselled jawed partner. Three girls are missing, one they rescue, one, as far as I can tell, is spread thin and wide when the bad guys set off a bomb. While the third girl remains missing.
From there we get lots of hints as to the international espionage that is behind these events, it promises to be exciting, exotic and eventful. The story of how Scarlett will retrieve the last kidnapped girl and expose the wrong doings behind the kidnap is obviously going to be plot of this first story arc.
Well that's this story, but there is of course another story, the story of Scarlett herself. Not only is she the daughter of a successful fashion designer (with secrets of her own), but her father was a Lieutenant of the NYPD. And like all heroes Scarlett has to have her own dark past. James Bond is a misogynist as a result of his beloved wife's death. Scarlett is rushing in to save a hostage because, as a teenager, she was herself kidnapped and held hostage.
But what was this readers reaction to Scarlett? Well, meh, to be honest. Loved the idea, but struggled with the execution. Scarlett is supposed to be a trained secret agent, she's got all the tech and the smarts, but she's also got skin tight pleather pants - so tight I don't even want to think where she was keeping the spare hand gun - and her perfect midriff is on display, not to mention she's wearing three inch high heels. Oh and has perfect hair. This isn't jealousy - well the last might be - but the outfit seems rather out of place for the job she has to do. Actually I think it's mostly the heels that annoy me on that count. At least Lara Croft wears boots.
There's also something about the drawing that doesn't really do it for me. There's nothing actually wrong with it, in fact the artwork is a commendable example of its style. I just don't like this almost anime style of art, maybe I'm too old school.
I can see plenty of reasons why Scarlett Couture is going to gather a huge following, and she should, the writing is decent and while I don't like the art, I can see why others would. My opinion, well this time you get three, as comics go three out of five, for me personally, two out of five, will I be reading the next edition - nope. Sorry guys, wish I could give a better verdict, but I have to be honest.
Scarlett Couture is out now.
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Gail lives in her own private dungeon populated with all the weird and
the wonderful she can imagine. Some of it’s very weird, and the odd bits
and pieces are a bit wonderful. Well okay, she lives in Swansea with
her husband and daughter. And the world’s most demanding cat. To find
out more about Gail, check out www.gailbwilliams.co.uk - Dare you!