Normally I don’t review superhero comics because let’s face it; it’s all been done before. I can’t tell you how many review copies are currently sitting in my inbox that are carbon copies of anything the Big Two are putting out nowadays, only with sketchier art and unimaginative storytelling. To willingly tackle the superhero genre, you need to bring something fun and original to an audience who has seen everything already, while not going the way of Mark Millar and having your characters swear every other word balloon or getting killed-off in splattertastic ways.
Enter artist extraordinaire Jamal Igle and his Kickstarter baby Molly Danger. The project made over $50,000 last August, and through the folks over at Action Lab Entertainment Molly Danger is about to become your new favorite superhero in the first volume debuting October 15th. While I did contribute to the Kickstarter, that doesn’t mean I’m going to be biased in the following review; it’s just hard to find anything to nitpick since it’s such a damn fun comic for all ages.
Molly Danger is an extraterrestrial with magnificent powers who has been protecting the town of Coopersville for the past 20 years. Oh yeah, and she’s a 10-year old girl. Well, she’s not really 10, she’s actually much older, but her species are immortal and the aging process works differently for them. As soon as Molly started kicking bad guy butt, the arrival of the Supermechs kept her constantly busy. Little about the Supermechs origins is known, but there’s obviously some connection between them and Molly.
While Molly Danger is the one who goes toe-to-toe with the Supermechs, she can’t do it alone and is assisted by Danger’s Action Response Team, or D.A.R.T. for short. Comprised of civilians and ex-military, D.A.R.T. works with the police and government to help keep the rest of the Coopersville population safe. One new recruit, Austin Briggs is a pilot who has wanted to work alongside Molly for years, and is known for not always following orders in the heat of battle. He has his own battle at home trying to gain the respect of his stepson Brian, so he’s hopeful that his new job at D.A.R.T. will help bring the two of them together.
Both Molly and Austin are rebels when it comes to the chain of command, and neither enjoys being forced to play by the rules. Molly also doesn’t enjoy the solitary confinement that comes with the job, for her superiors don’t want her fraternizing with the civilians because she’s immensely powerful in comparison. She’s caught between both worlds and emotions, being the last of her kind with no one to talk to. Austin seems to be the solution to some of her woes.
Jamal Igle does a superb job at world building, for there’s a rich history and colorful cast of characters from the get go. The Supermechs are forces to be reckoned with, and Medula in particular was quite sinister with his giant war machine. Igle created a strong female character that kicks ass and isn’t sexualized in any way, making it a perfect fit for a publisher like Action Lab. If that wasn’t impressive enough, Igle’s penciling combined with Juan Castro’s inks made the action-packed scenes really pop throughout the book. The art is gorgeous from beginning to end, and really shows what brilliance can be accomplished when given the freedoms of telling the story you want to tell.
There’s a lot of fun to be had in this first volume as we discover who Molly is and what she stands for, while simultaneously setting up the plot to future events. I had the biggest smile on my face throughout, and anxiously await the second book. Be sure to pick up a copy when it hits stores this October, or read it now on ComiXology.