WRITER: DUANE SWIERCZYNSKI | ART: JASON FELIX | PUBLISHER: STORM KING PRODUCTIONS | FORMAT: SINGLE ISSUE | RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW
The opening pages of Redhead treat us to a series of striking images. A redheaded woman running through the desert, the crosshairs of an attack drone and, most strikingly, a metric ton of computer buffed, intensely detailed, photo-traced artwork. The art is definitely the first thing you notice about Redhead and, if you like the photo-traced style, this is a good example of best practise, which actually manages to make characters have consistent appearances frame to frame and even captures realistic facial expressions that don’t (always) look like freeze frames from pornography. If you don’t like that art, boy is it distracting.
But let’s stop being distracted. Back to the plot. Marnie Young is on the run and, to explain why, we see her backstory, taking us from allergy-beset singleton professional with cat, to carrier of a strange condition that may or may not make her a menace to society. All of this we see from Marnie’s perspective and her narrative voice lends a lightness of tone to what could easily be a nauseatingly grim series of encounters. However, her narrative voice also sounds a worrying amount like a teenage boy trying to ventriloquise a grown woman into telling a shaggy dog story involving as much blood and carnage as his adolescent brain can summon. Which is actually kind of fun. But also a bit silly.
It’s not necessarily easy to see where the plot is building to, which is entirely a good thing (unless the plot is just being written into a corner with nowhere to go) so this issue’s slightly limp cliffhanger is no great concern, considering we still need to know how Marnie got to the desert of the opening scenes. Also, the mystery of her condition may have an interesting origin. Or it may just be an adolescent excuse to have blood and guts fly everywhere. Only future issues will tell. It might even be worth reading some of them to find out.