Birds of Prey #1 reviewed!

Title: Birds of Prey #1
Writer: Duane Swierczynski
Artist: Jesus Saiz
Colorist: Nei Ruffino
Publisher: DC Comics
Reviewed by Johnny Destructo

Action, suspense, fishnets. What more do you want?

Well, a couple things, actually. Like quality writing, solid art, and strong intelligent female characters. All of which are bases soundly covered in this first issue. Like with many of the positive reviews I’ve given to the DCnU books, I’ve never been a huge fan of The BoP. I’ve only caught a couple issues here and there. I get the main thrust. There are girls, usually led around by the wheelie-poppin’ Oracle, who do…stuff….as a team. So I’m coming at this with (fairly) fresh eyes. And you have to admit, like it or hate it, DCnU certainly has people trying out books they wouldn’t normally bother with, so cheers to them.

While the cover promises a mostly new BoP team of 4 members, we really only get to meet two of them in this issue. Black Canary, whom I’m already aware of, and Starling, of whom I’m less than aware. And so far…I like BOTH of these ladies. I’ve liked Canary ever since I saw her animated in the Justice League cartoons, and she continues to be a steady and self-assured fighter here. Best inner monologue quote: “If we survive this thing, I swear, first order of business…I’m going to recruit another ME.” Cocky? Maybe a little bit, but if you fight off hand-fulls of masked dudes with cloaking tech all by your onesies, you deserve to be a little cocksure. And yes I just realized that I wrote the word cock twice, describing a female character. And I think that this is what I like about BC in this issue. Her part could easily have been written for a man in tights. Swierczynski doesn’t try to sex her up or make her attractive. If you like strong female characters who can kick ass without wearing a thong, you’ll like Black Canary. As for her costume, while it’s definitely more appropriate for a fighter, it lacks the iconic quality of her older outfit. It’s blue and yellow with armor, but I feel like it could be a costume for almost any other female character, and doesn’t specifically scream Black Canary, and for a girl with a screaming power, I’d say that it’s important that her costume reflect that.

And Starling. I dig this one. Nevermind that I have a thing for girls with tat sleeves. Her outfit is slightly more distracting to her male enemies (see also: Boobs), but isn’t anything I don’t see girls wearing on a regular basis (sans sidearms, of course). I like her apparent religious background and her more street level approach to fighting, which makes a nice contrast next to Black Canary. So far, so good with the character interactions and I can’t wait to see what happens when Poison Ivy, Katana and Babs join the series. I hope it keeps up the pace!

The art by Jesus Saiz, while not entirely flashy, is filled with interesting compositions and I loveloveLOVE the backflash transitions. They’re incredibly cinematic in their effectiveness. He uses a particular pose in the present then uses that same exact pose in a completely different setting using a completely different mood to set up the time-rewind. Excellently handled.

This issue is a great jumping-on point …so jump on!

JD can be found hosting the PopTards Podcast, drawing a weekly webcomic, discussing movies, comics and other flimflam over at www.poptardsgo.com, graphically designing/illustrating/inking for a living, and Booking his Face off at http://www.facebook.com/jaydotdeedot. Follow his twitter @poptardsgo. His talkback name is PopTard_JD

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2 Comments to “Birds of Prey #1 reviewed!”

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  1. Brian the Hutt says:

    Wait till their cycles sync up like blue tooths. Once a month they will go Frank Miller on bad guys!

  2. jaydee says:

    ahhhhhhh…..menstrual jokes!

    😉

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