Tuesday 5 July 2011

Weekly Treats! Scarlet and Locke & Key

 Scarlet (Icon/Marvel) has been one of those titles that divided people from the first issue. The set up is fairly mainstream enough: Young New Yorker experiences bad, nay corrupt policing that results in the death of her boyfriend and inspires her to start a revolution. The writing by Brian Michael Bendis is grounded and spunky and Alex Maleev - so popular during the Daredevil run with Bendis but recently coming under some criticism for putting his pictures through the computer too much - matches him perfectly once again. So what could be sticking in some readers throats? Well the lead character has a habit of talking to the reader and breaking the fourth wall in any medium is a risky affair as it can break the spell of the story. Also, as the title is going for naturalism, it can be quite a talky affair. This isn't Tank Girl taking on the police, it's you or me (more likely you) so we get the moments of self-doubt and fear. 

Personally I'm in the ''thumbs up'' camp. I find the voyeur-breaking style rather refreshing and well handled (the square speech bubbles are addressed to us), Scarlet is a sympathetic character and the story is moving along nicely.

 Locke and Key (IDW) came close to being turned into a tv show recently. If you don't read it you may feel justified to learn that it was turned down but when I tell you that concerns were raised about the show being too smart and complex then it turns into something of recommendation. After all it's only about a creepy mansion and a set of keys that change doors so that anyone who walks through them is...changed. Well it's not only about that and the narrative twists around a bit. Anyway it's very good horror and volume three is out this week in paperback. 

As is Northlanders volume 5 (DC) by the undervalued Brian Wood. An excellent viking series is hard to come by generally so you really have no excuse not to be following it.

As for the Weekly Treats well the Stones and the Beatles do battle again as Fear Itself #4 (wait 'til finds out about Bucky) and Flashpoint #3 (Flash mobilises his team) jostle for shelf space. A slew of tie-ins join the fray including Flashpoint Batman: Knight of Vengeance #2 (Joker leaves his mark) and Fear Itself: Uncanny X-Force #1 (blessed with Simone Bianchi's shiny artwork). Other than that it's those men in capes with Batman and Robin #25 (the three ''sons'' of Wayne unite) and Moon Knight #3 (continuing to challenge Deadpool for the Insaniest Hero award).


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