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Writing: Johnny Zito, Tony Trov

Art: Rahzzah

Review by Melissa Megan

I should start this off by stating that I’m not much of a ‘super hero’ gal. I’ve been known to read some Batman, as most have, mostly because of it’s darker, edgy, damaged character. Personally, I’ve not found most super hero stories to contain enough of those attributes to keep me drawn in. Moon Girl is a rare exception. This book is as gritty as they come, each of it’s characters slightly busted (or more than slightly) and the ass kicking never stops. It’s got a strong and modern story.  And I haven’t even gotten started on the art work which is unlike anything I’ve seen being done in comics.

Claire Lune just wants to be an ER nurse, going to work every day and going home like everyone else. A mentor from her past, Satanna, is committed to preventing her from fading in to the crowd of normalcy and she’ll stop at nothing to force Claire to be who she really is: a princess and a hero. There’s is a history that goes far back, rooted in a tragic story of royalty betrayed by their own people in war. Claire is Moon Girl, it is her destiny, although she has gone to great lengths to escape that identity and the responsibilities attached to it.

One evening when the dead rise from the ER hospital beds and fires explode all over the city, Moon Girl must go to battle again, fighting crime and protecting the people she hides among in her new life. Zombies are only the beginning; rebellion is in the air, sparking riots through the city. Moon Girl will soon face some of the most brutal foes of her life, Sugar Plum Faerie and Tiki Bob. They are also out to force Moon Girl to take her place at the top, not for peace and protection but for power and tyranny. Everyone has an agenda here and Moon Girl is the weapon by which they will achieve it.

There are so many reasons why I love this story. Moon Girl is tormented by her identity, her past and her fear of what she could be. She’s lost so much in life to those who were supposed to love and protect her. Satanna is a fascinating creature, obsessed with her prodigy and a slave to her need to see the princess rise, at the cost of her own life. The villains of this book are cold, hard, nasty creatures who will happily spill blood and brains for short term satisfaction. Sugar Plum Faerie is my personal favorite; she’s gleefully sadistic and unhinged. Moon Girl tells tales of historical uprising, modern day societal struggle and intimate, personal disquiet of the spirit.

Then, there’s the art of Rahzzah. Incredibly vibrant, explosive stuff. At times it looks like a complex painting that’s about to jump off the page and hit you in the face. It’s dimensional and textured. The women he creates are beautiful but scarred, imperfect but always sexy. The tone of the art changes constantly with the story line, jumping from sharp, angular panels with crystal clear details to foggy, soft landscapes that feel like seeing through a NyQuil hangover. Rahzzah has a particular strength in making you feel  the punches and kicks. Noses burst on impact and a throat sliced by a swinging pendulum opens with a quiet spray of blood. This story is intense and unflinching, the art of Rahzzah perfectly conveys that.

Verdict: Buy this book. It’s gorgeous, raw, action packed and ridiculously bad-ass. These are not your daddy’s heroes and villains, these are violent and mentally unstable characters with giant balls. I simply love this story and I can not wait to see what these creators produce next.

3 Responses

  1. Bob Reyer

    Melissa,

    What an enticing review!

    From the samples I’ve seen, the artwork does look amazing, and I’m always interested in the revival of a Golden Age character. My one caveat, this being me, is that I must ask, in a specific-to-this-book sense, if the level of violence is both intrinsic to and important for the plot?

    If such be the case, I might be on-board! After all, not even I can really carp about what is the “on-model” characterization of a heroine that ran for 8 now-forgotten 1947 EC Comics issues (under 3 titles, no less: Moon Girl & the Prince, Moon Girl, Moon Girl Fights Crime) before morphing into a romance comic called A Moon, A Girl…Romance!

    Quizzingly,
    Bob

  2. Melissa Megan

    Considering the story events and the nature of the characters here, I would say yes, the violence is an important part of the plot. For me, it makes the villains that much more intimidating and the fights more realistic.

    I debated referring to the source material in my review and chose to focus on the book itself as an independent work, as it is more of a re-imagining of Moon Girl than a new story of her. I’m glad you brought it up though, because now I can also add that the trade paperback includes some really cool extra pages including some of the original Moon Girl covers.

    I’d be interested to hear what you think of it after you read, Bob!

  3. Bob Reyer

    Melissa,

    Thanks for the thoughtful response!

    My understanding is that it is set in the late 40s/early 50s, so if Moon Girl evokes the movies and books of the era, whether film noir or the nascent “Mike Hammer” books, where people doing “bad things” was the norm, you may have made a sale for the folks at Red 5!!

    Bob

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