In a small harbor town, there is a strange plague about. In that town, there is a brothel wherein a young girl named Jenny Finn spends much of her time. No one knows much about Jenny other than that she’s a bit odd. A patron of that brothel named Joe takes an interest in what a girl so young does in a part of town like that. His questions lead him to following Jenny and a day he is likely not to forget anytime soon.
Jenny Finn leads off with a delightfully bizarre read. The titular Jenny is barely present in the comic, but we learn much about her reputation from those surrounding her. She is as much a mystery to us as she is to Joe.
Joe is a well-meaning enough character. He’s likable, but circumstances lead him into some pretty horrifying situations through the course the book. His good nature even leads directly to some of those situations.
There is a lot of outlandish creativity here that works to the comic’s benefit. There are many plot details and scenarios that you likely haven’t seen very often before. There are some plot details, such as the focus upon sex workers, which feel clichéd and overused in the Victorian London setting; but, thankfully, they don’t bog down the plot too much.
Writers Mike Mignola and Troy Nixey show delightfully odd sensibilities throughout the comic.
The art style is ugly in an appealing manner, if that makes sense. The people, the places, the world, is ugly and often oddly shaped. It doesn’t dip into surrealism, but the people especially are lumpy, warped, and a bit disgusting. It works so well for the kind of story being told, and I dig it.
The color work is pale, washed out, and sickly. This also jives with the tone Jenny Finn is going for, so kudos to color artist Dave Stewart for making sure the colors gel with the narrative. He does good work here.
Jenny Finn #1 is a mysterious yet appealing dive into this pseudo-Victorian London setting. The world, the characters, the details — they all coincide to create this air of uncertainty and danger. It is a greatly enjoyable read, and I recommend it.
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