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There’s nothing wrong with an origin story, especially when it is about a character few comic book readers have little knowledge.  For masquerade, readers not only get an origin origin, but also a Dynamite Entertainment’s take on her modern origin.

masquerade3cover.jpgThe heroes are disappearing one by one, and Masquerade is trying to track them down.  For the female detective, it takes one of her former rogues to help her figure it out.  Those who have read Project Superpowers, the connection to the Fighting Yank, can only spell trouble.  While the end of the issue is already revealed in another series, Masquerade’s interaction with her semi-legit foe is an interesting look at how the character has changed from a go-get’em wholesome girl, to a woman who will do nearly anything to find her friends.

Seeing the heroine change in three issues, but scattered throughout the series have been a series of flashbacks to Masquerade’s past that show how she decided to take up the mask and fight crime.  This time, the flashbacks deal with her kidnapped friend from last issue, the discovery her brother was behind it, and her losing all of her family members over the years.  There are a lot of cliche moments throughout the issue, but they are presented to the reader to explain how Masquerade was able to maintain her sanity while being locked in Pandora’s Urn.

Once again, Phil Hester delivers a story that hits the major hits the major marks without stumbling over the very Nancy Drew-esque kidnapping tale. The art duties are split between Carlos Paul and Jean Diaz, so there is a noticeable difference between the current story and the flashback moments.  Paul doesn’t go the overly sexy route in drawing Masquerade which is fine by me.  I’d rather see a more realistically drawn character than one that can show both her boobs and her butt at the same time.

I like that Dynamite Entertainment is attempting to take these public domain characters and give them a new life.  If nothing else it might get a new generation interested in these golden age heroes, and may spark new discussion, or even a Hero History or two.  The third issue did continue the story and does flesh out the character of Masquerade, but I can’t help but be somewhat bothered by the cliches that abound on every page.  I still like the series, but this issue seemed to stall for me earning a meager 2.5 out of 5 Stars.

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The Author

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher

Stephen Schleicher began his career writing for the Digital Media Online community of sites, including Digital Producer and Creative Mac covering all aspects of the digital content creation industry. He then moved on to consumer technology, and began the Coolness Roundup podcast. A writing fool, Stephen has freelanced for Sci-Fi Channel's Technology Blog, and Gizmodo. Still longing for the good ol' days, Stephen launched Major Spoilers in July 2006, because he is a glutton for punishment.

You can follow him on Twitter @MajorSpoilers and tell him your darkest secrets...

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