Welcome to my very first webcomic review! I’m a blunt and opinionated soldier, so expect very untactful, yet honest outbursts from me. Warning: if you are afraid your feelings might get hurt, don’t ask for a review. If you are worried that your feelings might get disintegrated, don’t even read my reviews – you may see yourself in the artist whose work is being torn apart and never get out of your room for the rest of your existence. If that is the case, please seek help. There’s more to life than doing comics and getting upset over a character giving a bad review to your precious story. Especially when she’s doing that completely drunk.
If none of this scares you, check out this page to find out how to submit your comic for a review.
Without any further ado: Today, I read Who is the Girl, but since it was before combat training and I had to stay responsive, this will be a…
Yes, yes, boring stuff. I will spell out my review in neat sections. First, my general impression of the comic. Next, the author’s blurb/description of the comic with my own comment to it. And then, I will plunge into the writing: story, characters, plot, dialog and pacing, followed by art and conclusions. Spoilers might occur, but I will try to avoid them as much as possible.
Fueled by great art and a well-crafted plot, Who is the Girl falls prey to a number of trite cliches, but if you enjoy thrillers based upon endless abuse of main female characters, this comic will keep you entertained and wishing for more.
Author’s description of the comic
Meet The Girl, she is cyberpunk and scifi, she’s sexy and smart and funny and you really need to meet her!
Hey, with such a description, I just can’t wait to meet someone else! Seriously, this reads like an ad written by a teenage pimp trying to sell his girlfriend’s body online. And when you read the story, you realize that’s exactly what’s happening to the girl. Yet, I can’t tell what Cary meant by this blurb. Is he introducing his main character in a juvenile fashion because he wants to attract certain readers or is he appropriating the language of the girl’s viewers to indirectly chastise them?
A young hustler, referred to as “the girl”, runs a modern and lucrative business with her boyfriend Dogg: she’s a webcam girl, or a young lady who thinks that masturbating live online is the coolest adrenaline shot ever and the best way to make money and become famous. Or maybe she doesn’t. We can’t really tell, because the girl flips between being a complete victim of circumstances and willfully charming people into doing everything she wants. Not that she wants much – for example, she convinces a young boy, AKA “the boy”, to run errands for her and just be a cutie pie while she’s swinging her underwear under his nose.
All seems (more or less) fine, until the girl is suddenly attacked (or maybe overdoses – or both), loses conscience, and wakes up tied to a dirty bed in a filthy room. She is fed some yucky brown goo and reluctantly forced to remember her sad childhood with her abusive father. From there on, we learn that Dogg and the boy, too have a history of family violence. In the meantime, a grumpy and cynical detective gets on the lookout for the now missing girl.
Conspiracy theories ensue, as we discover that there may be some kind of an experiment behind all of this.
If you like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and similar products, then you’ll probably like the girl. She suffers a decent amount of senseless abuse and everyone in the story is very preoccupied with repeating over and over again how gorgeous, smart, and funny (which, in this comic, all seem synonyms for “sexy”) she is. If you are like me, you’ll go from being extremely puzzled at why anyone would give a damn about the girl (still haven’t seen her being smart or funny and, no, I don’t find her sexy), rolling your eyes at the infinite amount of sexual cliches (the girl gets it going with another girl in some exclusive club! Yay, a liberated bicurious girl for the titillation of straight guys!), and just skipping a page here and there.
Dogg, or the girl’s boyfriend/pimp, is the guy behind her success. He also sides with her abusers for no apparent reason other than shock value. While his behavior is portrayed as unpredictable and perhaps conflicted, given his changing attitude toward the girl, he’s another walking cliche: a guy who maybe is bad because he was severely abused for years and years or maybe is another victim of a horrible society that eats up its young and spits it out. Honestly, the young victim of society is a very interesting trope to me, except the entire comic comes across as a superficial exercise in cheap thrills, so it’s hard to take this character seriously.
Finally, the boy: a kid who apparently is never in school and who’s madly, deeply in love with the girl (just like everyone else, except he is a bit more than anyone else, I guess). This is another character who exists just to support the idea that the girl is the most awesome thing in the universe and to give the reader some hope that some day he’ll be able to charm her back and maybe… who knows… more titillation? Simple hope for a better future? I can’t tell. Maybe more will be revealed in the coming chapters.
Plot, dialog and pacing
These (along with the art) are the strongest points of the comic. The story progresses at a great pace, never dragging along or rushing, always introducing characters and plot twists seamlessly, and (if this kind of story is for you) keeping you hooked and wishing for more. If Cary is a not a professional writer (I am not familiar with him), he is certainly a writer at a professional level. He knows when and how to change pace, switch storyline, and did I mention the dialog? It’s masterfully executed. I wish more webcomic authors could learn from Cary how to develop a plot, it would raise the standards for many.
Cary is a very talented artist. Although I thoroughly dislike the general blurry effect of most of this comic, he powerfully conveys the mood of each scene and situation by an awesome use of different angles, perspectives and colors. The art in general is very dynamic and professional. Balloon placement is perfect and it is very pleasant to the eye.
Who is the Girl is a thriller with much violence and adult situations, great art and good dialog. The story is however riddled with cliches and an extreme focus on a main character that, although not showing much depth or any traits that make her stand apart from the rest of the cast, is strangely adored by everyone. A nice read for those who enjoy a fast-paced story, a decently developed mystery and sexual stuff as an eye candy.
© 2016, Infected Blood Comics