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Molly Danger FCBD 2013 [Review]

mollydangerfcbd2013Story and Art: Jamal Igle
Inker: Juan Castro
Colorist: Romulo Fajardo Jr.
Letterer: Frank Cvetkovic
Editor: Adam P. Knave
Published by: Action Lab Entertainment
Cover Price: $0.00

I was kinda surprised by this issue’s cover, as it seemed at first glance to suggest that Molly Danger could be a more fantasy-esque series than I’d thought, and that she might have a “sidekick” picked up in a story titled “Princeless.”

However, that’s certainly not the case! What happened here is something that I’m not used to, as I’ve stuck pretty much to mainstream stuff from the big publishers of late. That is, with these “independent” publishers, creators get a lot more freedom to work together, and so in this case, Igle‘s Molly Danger can be featured with Whitley‘s Princeless, and it works.

And that’s what this issue is: we get a Molly Danger story, my introduction to the character–and we get a separate Princeless story (that I’ll cover below).

I’ve heard of Molly Danger–I recall there was some sort of Kickstarter campaign awhile back, and I’ve seen stuff posted online. So I was curious…and here, fulfilling one of the greatest things about Free Comic Book Day, I’ve been given a chance to read a story of the character withOUT having to sink $3-$4 into it.

This story opens with a couple pilots responding to an alert, and reference to something called D.A.R.T.–apparently the group they belong to. We see that the city’s under attach by a large mech, and come to realize that D.A.R.T. seems to be a sort of analogue for Marvel‘s S.H.I.E.L.D., and they ‘support’ Molly Danger, that she’s got some sort of super abilities, but can’t (effectively) do it all herself. When the mech surprises her and knocks her over a mile away, she finds herself in a tough spot–with authorities blocking the area off, she needs to get back in–which is where those pilots come in.

There’s something a lot more fun and elegant to the story itself, that my words do not convey…as with any story: the difference between experiencing it, and being told ABOUT it.

The art has a nice quality to it–something I can’t quite put to words. But it’s good, and IS Molly Danger. I enjoyed Igle‘s work on Supergirl a few years ago from DC, and having sampled his creator-owned stuff in this: I’m inclined to seek out the series itself, and look forward to more of this character.

Girls Who Fight Boys
Story: Jeremy Whitley
Art: Emily C. Martin
Colors: Soojin Paek
Letters: Dave Dwonch

This story was a sort of “bonus,” something I would not have sought out and really only read because it was in the Molly Danger issue.

Visually, there’s something to Princeless that puts me in mind of web comics, like the style somehow seems suited for a web strip. It’s got a rather “cute” look with some manga thrown in, and even could almost pass for being based on a video game or such.

Story-wise, we’re introduced to a princess trapped in a tower, waiting on a knight to show up and rescue her. Eventually someone does show up–with a dragon–but turns out that this pair are a female knight and her friend, and while a male knight stands around espousing sexist views on how men should do the rescuing and women are feeble and must be protected, the female knight proceeds defy this. She and the male knight fight, the princess is rescued, and everyone gets a laugh outta these women who are not very “lady-like.”

This story was amusing enough to read, even though it felt a little preachy, a little “obvious” it was trying to take a stereotype and turn it on its head. It’s not bad, but I’m pretty sure a 32-year-old guy who prefers super-heroes to most else is NOT the target audience.

I definitely recommend this Molly Danger-featured issue, especially as a Free Comic Day comic is just about the best way to sample something. And rare as it is, it’s FCBD comics and other promotionally-priced comics that seem to do the best at drawing me in, given the $3-4 price tag on most comics these days.

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