Some say she’s a fairy tale. Some say she’s a demon. The truth is much more complicated. Your Major Spoilers review of La Diabla #1 from Albatross Funnybooks awaits!
LA DIABLA #1
Writer: Eric Powell
Artist: Eric Powell
Colorist: Andrea Smith & Eric Powell
Editor: Tracy Marsh
Publisher: Albatross Funnybooks
Cover Price: $3.99
Release Date November 4, 2020:
Previously in La Diabla: Who is she? What is she? A vigilante? A Phantom? A beast straight from Hell? Are you listening, Bronze? She is La Diabla! A fuel injected Latina suicide machine sent to strike down the unroadworthy! A rocker, a roller, out-of-controller! She’s laying down a rubber road to freedom, baby! Think of her when you look up at the night sky!
“THE WIND CARRIES THE CRIES OF THE INNOCENT TO HER.”
We open in the Mexican desert, as the mysterious masked La Diabla observes a van passing through her territory. Inside we find a group of criminals and a kidnapped young girl, whose terrified whimpers leave one of her captors worried that Diabla will hear. He tells the tale of a policeman whose daughter was the only survivor of a massacre at her wedding, who haunts the desert and protects the innocent. Or was she a young bride whose criminal father crossed the wrong men, leaving her to be tortured and burned to death, only to rise against as a demonic presence. No, his friend interrupts, La Diabla was a beautiful young nun who died at the hands of human traffickers, renouncing her vows to become a demon hellbent on revenge. Or was she a young girl who was disfigured by an evil man and raised by nuns, only to find that she was possessed? It really doesn’t matter, because by the time they’re done explaining, La Diabla attacks.
And she doesn’t leave any of the villains alive.
The end of this book promises to continue in an upcoming Albatross title called ‘The Lords of Misery’ and based on this issue, I’m going to check it out. This comic makes for a quick read, but it’s engaging and complex nonetheless. The various legends of La Diabla and what might be behind her mask and driving helmet are all wonderful, and the coloring is especially amazing, better even than Powell’s art itself. Diabla’s hot rod is beautifully rendered and the action sequence here is really well-done, making it clear that regardless of the mystery behind her, she’s clearly a force to be reckoned with. This story could have been nothing more than a vignette, but it ends up building up the mystique of the main character, and it ends up being a very entertaining one-shot issue all around.
BOTTOM LINE: I LIKE IT
In short, La Diabla #1 is just plain good comic books, with strong art and a compelling story and particularly wonderful coloring throughout, using the earth-tones of the desert to great effect, making the reds and blacks of La Diabla’s clothing stand out that much more, with some inspired moments of storytelling making for a well-deserved 4 out of 5 stars overall. It’s been a while since I read an Eric Powell comic, and this one is easily as engaging as The Goon, making sure that I’ll be back for what comes next.
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LA DIABLA #1
The story tells you little to nothing concrete, but somehow manages to build La Diabla's mythology incredibly well, with some impressive art and especially inspired coloring.