Tag Archives: indie comics

Panels of Awesomeness: Her Infernal Descent #1

By Rob Siebert
Fanboy Wonder

CREATORS: Lonnie Nadler and Zac Thompson (Authors), Kyle Charles (Artist), Dee Cunniffe (Colorist), Ryan Ferrier (Letterer)

THE SCENE: A middle-aged woman continues to mourn the loss of her family before quite literally taking a journey into hell.

WHY THEY’RE AWESOME: In storytelling of any nature, much is made of the narrative “hook,” i.e. what the author uses in the opening moments of the story to draw their audience into the story.

Her Infernal Descent is a modern re-telling of Dante’s Inferno. Desperately longing to see her dead family again, our main character Lynn is approached by the spirit of William Blake. Despite the risk, she descends into hell with him and begins her journey through its nine circles.

But before any of that happens, we spend a handful of pages with Lynn at home (shown at right). They’re absolutely heartbreaking. It’s all so excruciatingly realistic. Look at some of the backgrounds. The kitchen is an absolute wreck. There are dirty dishes in the sink as she eats a casserole out of the dish. All the boxes from packing up. The cluttered on the floor. The empty wine glasses. Dee Cunniffe’s colors are so beautifully muted. Even when Lynn sees the sun, there’s a bleakness to it. Note the details Kyle Charles gives us with her body language. Look at Lynn’s face. Look at her posture. The unkempt hair.

But what pushed these three pages over the edge for me was the script. I’m not sure how Lonnie Nadler and Zac Thompson broke down the writing duties. But these lines punch you right in the gut because they’re so relatable. The ones that really got me were the ones about the silence in the house:

“…the first thing I noticed was the quiet. I thought I could handle it. But I can’t. I wake up and there’s nothing. I’ve hardly said a darn word to anyone since. When I was with them, they drove me up a wall. Now I’d do anything to feel that again.”

I mean, holy crap…

From there we go into a two-page spread. It’s Lynn climbing up into the attic. There are so many memories up there, and she’s flooded with them. I wont’ show it to you here, because I want you to see the issue for yourself.

Her Infernal Descent #1 is published by AfterShock, and hit comic shops April 18. It’s also available on Comixology. The next issue is solicited for release on May 23.

Email Rob at PrimaryIgnition@yahoo.com, or follow Primary Ignition on Twitter.

A Geek-Girl #2 Review – What is It You’re Trying to Be?

geek-girl #2, cover, Carlos GrandaTITLE: Geek-Girl #2
AUTHOR: Sam Johnson
PENCILLER: Carlos Granda
PUBLISHERS: Sam Johnson, Markosia Enterprises LTD
PRICE: $3.99
RELEASED: December 4, 2016

By Rob Siebert
Editor, Fanboy Wonder

Cheesecake anyone? Or maybe Geek-Cake?

Ruby Kaye has been thrust into the spotlight as the superhero Geek-Girl. The mysterious supervillainess Lightning Stom has already hospitalized two of Maine’s established heroes, leaving Ruby to pick up the slack. Feeling the pressure, she does what any hero would do: She hits the bar with her best friend Summer. But drama follows, as Ruby has a crisis of confidence.

Here’s my big question with Geek-Girl: What does this book want to be? When I read it, I’m seeing two different things. On one hand, there are elements of a teenage superhero drama in here. Ruby stumbles on to superpowers and is in over her head, and at the same time has to deal with the popular kids not liking her, and guys not being into her either.

But at the same time, there’s an overt sexuality on these pages that can’t be denied. Almost every woman you see has big boobs, big lips, and Ruby herself is often drawn provocatively. This issue in particular has a story that could have been plucked straight from a porn parody. Depressed with how her super heroics have fared lately, Ruby goes to a bar to get drunk with Summer. At one point, the bartender offers to buy her a drink. But when she returns later with her Geek-Girl glasses on, he turns her down. She then comes close to sharing a kiss with a girl on the dance floor. A girl in a tube top with a cybernetic eye, no less! An impromptu sparring session between the two then takes place, and we get the following panel…

Geek-Girl #2, 2016, kick

So I’ll ask again, Geek-Girl: What is it you’re trying to be? Not every story needs to fit needly into a genre. But Geek-Girl goes too far in the cheesecake direction for me to take it seriously as a teen superhero drama. That it seems that’s what it’s aiming to be.

The name Geek-Girl is also a bit of a stretch. I had high hopes that Ruby would be a fangirl of sorts who somehow gains superpowers. Sadly, what we get is even more far-fetched. Ruby wins a pair of magic glasses in a game of strip poker, but a mean girl tells her she looks like a geek in them. Ergo, Geek-Girl. Not only does wearing glasses apparently make Ruby a geek, but it kills her sexual confidence.  I guess it’s amazing what a pair of glasses can do. Just ask Clark Kent.

I don’t take any pleasure in being critical of a little indie comic like this. But do yourself a favor and don’t show Geek-Girl to your wife or girlfriend. It’s not that kind of female superhero book.

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