Meanwhile… (SFSX #3 Comic Review)

Written & Created by Tina Horn

Drawn, Colored, & Cover by Alejandra Gutiérrez

Lettered by Steve Wands

Edited & Designed by Laurenn McCubbin

“The people working here aren’t doing it because we’re super cool, or damaged, or wanna feel alive. We’re here because we need to get paid.”

In This Issue: A perfect companion to issue #2, this month’s SFSX gives us the action back at The Dirty Mind during the time it takes Avory to seek out Nick.

It’s almost showtime, and Sylvia and Casey are having a little heart to heart about what happened earlier that day with Avory–how Avory needs to regain their trust–and the fact that if she’s gone anywhere besides The Dirty Mind to hide out, she will have gone to Nick’s. The ladies very quickly have to turn their attention to the vanload of patrons who have just been admitted to the club. Casey broadcasts the rules and goes over the tech the patrons will use via remote cameras, and then Sylvia takes the ‘Tricks’ on a physical tour of the premises. Denis, who had been doing his usual techie duties, shows up on the main floor trying to find Casey, but isn’t having any luck and is getting anxious–he has some news. After giving her tour, Sylvia took a break for a bowl of cereal, but her peace is short-lived. Avory’s visit is on everyone’s mind, and they’re making sure Sylvia knows exactly what they think–and what they think Jones would think.

Denis finally locates Casey on the roof and gets her back inside to see some footage from a hijacked Party feed. It’s the interview with Mrs. Boreman and a newly-reformed Jones, filmed ahead of time to be broadcast later, labeled as ‘live footage’ to the public. Casey is shocked, but Sylvia, who comes in unexpectedly, is physically ill.

It’s the proverbial straw on the back of the metaphorical camel. Casey, Sylvia, and Denis go to find Avory.

My Two Cents: This issue of SFSX was drawn and colored by guest ‘pop-in’ artist Alejandra Gutiérrez, which meant that we were treated to a completely different style than we’ve seen with Michael Dowling’s art in the past two issues. Gutiérrez’s style has softer edges and a more manga-type feel which offers a few moments of cartoon-esque character expressions. It’s a fun little departure from the norm. The fact that the team decided to devote an entire issue to a “Meanwhile, back at the ranch…”-type switch of point of view was a great way to fill the readers in, especially because that kind of sequence is usually relegated to a condensed exposition on a couple of pages. Now that the characters are reunited, I expect that the narrative will return to a linear format, but we could still be surprised.

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Elizabeth Fazzio
South Bay native turned East Bay resident. Holder of two less-than-useful arts degrees. Human Resources professional by day, creative recluse the rest of the time. Favorite words: Weasel, toast. Mental health advocate--https://makeitok.org
Elizabeth Fazzio
Summary
There are nine pages in this issue primarily devoted to the inner workings of The Dirty Mind, including a list of do’s and don’ts. Within the story, it allows the reader to better understand the setting and the rules of the fictional universe. I happen to believe that a certain portion of the information on these nine pages could be removed entirely from the narrative--their original context--and applied to sex on a universal scale. In fact, I think it would be beneficial to, well, everyone. The fact that the idea of taking it upon myself to do up leaflets and hand them out to strangers and/or having it painted on the ceiling above my bed seem like REALLY GOOD IDEAS speaks to a distinct gap in social consciousness as it pertains to sexual activity. (I mean, yeah, okay, my response might be slightly overdramatic, but the logic is sound.) What it really boils down to is: COMMUNICATE. DON’T BE A JERK. AND ALWAYS, ALWAYS SEEK CONSENT. Consent is the sexiest thing there ever was and ever will be. You will never convince me otherwise.
Good
  • Extras within the book
  • Story elements are balanced
Bad
  • Story is a bit predictable
8.3
Great
Art - 8
Story - 9
Writing - 9
Predictability - 7
Written by
South Bay native turned East Bay resident. Holder of two less-than-useful arts degrees. Human Resources professional by day, creative recluse the rest of the time. Favorite words: Weasel, toast. Mental health advocate--https://makeitok.org

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