Nazis in New York? And Marla Drake, a.k.a. Miss Fury, thought she was just out busting some common criminals. Though she’ll be the first to tell you she’s not a superhero, it looks like it’s going to fall to Miss Fury to stop these time-travelling National Socialists from rewriting the history of the world.
STORYTELLING NONLINEAR BE CONFUSING CAN
“Miss Fury” #1 defied my expectations by being more than a straightforward pulp story. Instead of hard-boiled crime-heavy narrative, the story is an amalgam of pulp and non-linear science fiction that at times feels more “Iron Sky” than Golden Age. It doesn’t work, at least not in this issue.
Marla Drake is a wholly unlikable misanthrope who seems to enjoy unwarranted pettiness and revels in her ability to be rude and off-putting to even the most well-meaning of interlopers who would dare disturb her public privacy. Explicitly, we know little of her back story aside from her sojourn to Africa and the amorously ethnographic studies she conducted therein, but dialogue seems to make obvious her father’s social and parenting deficiencies. It’s not difficult to imagine the effects an emotionally absent parent can have on a young woman, so there is at least a valid root to her behavior, though the back story doesn’t go nearly far enough to explain her. The necessity of such a character analysis speaks to the quality of the writing—it’s there, make no mistake. The story is what didn’t measure up.
Its non-linear leaps and hops left me confused early on and that undoubtedly colored my experience through the rest of the issue, but the novelty had worn off on a second read, so I was left feeling that while the writer tried to use an interesting literary device to improve the telling, it would have been better to stick with a more sensible cause-leads-to-effect narrative.
Jack Herbert’s art is glorious. He’s given many of the books action-oriented panels something close to a third dimension—knives leaping off the page, gunshots grazing your head—it’s anything but static. During quieter scenes the detail of faces—very expressive save for one or two anomalies—and backgrounds carry us forward through dialogue raining from cryptic to expository.
BOTTOM LINE: MIDDLING FIRST OUTING, BUT ROOM TO GROW
I found this book… interesting. Its non-linear and sci-fi elements went a bit beyond the pulpy bounds I was expecting. Typically I enjoy sci-fi in any form, but it felt like an unexpected and unwelcome house guest in “Miss Fury” #1. None of this is to say it was necessarily bad—just that it betrayed my expectations and not in a good way. As always I’ll be reading the second issue to see if my mind can be changed, but at least the book left me wanting more with its ending. 3 stars on the strength of the art.
DID YOU READ THIS ISSUE? RATE IT!