It all heats up in SFSX #6 from Image Comics as a brainwashed Jones confronts her former friends in the old Dirty Mind nightclub. And while Dr Powell perfects is pain device, Boreman leads the Party in a conflagration of the sex devices. Will all that burning latex prove a health hazard? Find out in your Major Spoilers review!
Writer: Tina Horn
Artist: Jen Hickman
Colorist: Jen Hickman
Letterer: Steve Wands
Editor: Laurenn McCubbin
Publisher: Image Comics
Release Date: February 12th, 2020
Previously in SFSX: Avery , George and Casey face their worst fears against their friend turn turncoat, Jones. Meanwhile, a powerful Powell has confronted Sylvia Dennis and Nick. The aptly named Boreman is leading his party towards a final victory, one that will see the end of all that the Dirty Mind holds dear…
COME ON, FEEL THE NOISE
SFSX #6 is an issue featuring two distinct, but related storylines, as two trios of our heroes attempt to evade and upturn the activities of the fun-hating Party. Avory and Casey have freed George from imprisonment, and are being chased by their former friend, the brainwashed Jones. In the other strand, Sylvia, Nick and Denis confront Doctor Powell, who has created an implant that can provide infinite pleasure, or infinite pain.
SFSX #6 is an entertaining issue, opening with an explicit sex act that some might feel confronting, while others may feel liberating. And those two poles are the themes that dominate this issue and the series overall. Which is the better way in life – to protect and conserve a manner of living that is respectful of old virtues, or a liberated experience, where no action is bad, and that pleasure and pain are just different sides of the same coin?
It is clear which side SFSX #6 is on, which is why the series feels like an exercise is promoting one lifestyle over another. The actions of the Party – censorship, punishment of difference, an unwillingness to allow others to live their lives as they see fit, are an extreme, puritanical reaction to difference. It is a pointer to where the writer, Tina Horn, thinks America is going. It’s been a recent trope of dystopian fiction that America splits in two – enclaves of liberalism on both coasts, while the heartland becomes a religious wasteland where access to abortion, gay rights and sexual freedom are things of the past.
Horn’s approach is a warning shot, but also feels a little too out there to be believable. That said, there is merit in her approach, and feels like a really heartfelt cry for tolerance. Her characters want to live their lives without impediment – they’re not imposing it on anyone else, and only react when the authorities attempt to stamp on them.
FINE LINE BETWEEN PLEASURE AND PAIN
Jen Hickman’s artwork and coloring are exemplary. The scenes in the reclaimed Dirty Mind, run by the Party as a re-education and punishment facility, are toned down, to reflect it’s black and white thinking on morality. Backgrounds are sparse, with a focus on the characters being the main aspect of her artwork. Her inking is strong and confident, with facial expressions rendered with a few lines here and there to demonstrate mood and emotion.
loved the bold cover artwork, which provided all the main elements of what SFSX #6 contains: A fascist holds the torch of liberty, demonstrating that it’s not only the libertarians in the issue that are given to perversion. A cattle prod sparks, and a crazed looking individual with ‘pain’ written on their hand, indicates that the read to come is one that will be confronting, for all concerned.
BOTTOM LINE: LIBERTY, IF YOU CAN KEEP IT
The balancing act of modern society is depicted in SFSX #6 – your right to live as you see fit versus my right to impose my morality on you. The neo-puritans of the Party are depicted as humorless drones intent on inflicting pain on those who stray outside their narrow definition of how life should be lived, while the libertines of the Dirty Mind just want to be allowed to be as perverted and sexually free as they desire (which is a lot!). Of course, there’s always a middle ground, which is how the real world (sometimes) works, but then SFSX #6 wouldn’t be as entertaining as our bourgeois feelings on sex.
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A rollicking ride as two sides go to war to impose/defend their way of living. Fluid artwork coupled with didatic storytelling come together to produce an entertaining, compelling (if one sided) story of sex and freedom.