I dedicate this blog to comics in all forms, manga, autobio, superhero, art books, etc. And of course, since I need a challenge, I've decided that I'll read and write (short) reviews for 365 comics during 2015.
I was really disappointed in Mystery Girl by Paul Tobin, having read some of his work in the past and been very impressed, such as with Bandette.
And I really wanted to like Mystery Girl. I liked the idea, I liked the first few pages I read, but everything went downhill pretty fast. 16% of this 100 page comic book featured nudity, stripping or character postures that looked straight out of porn. Sure you could argue about that 5 page fight sequence when one of the police detectives, discovered passed out naked on his bed (with porn visible on his computer screen) and a fight ensues. However, there was a narrative reason created in that scene for why the man was naked (how much sense it makes is up to the reader to decide), but in scene after scene women are depicted naked for only the reason that they're sex workers, so they're always naked.
Which brings up another interesting point. Of the prominent characters in the comic who were women, half of them were sex workers. And only background characters (often older women) did not conform to the body type of a model sports illustrated model. Why were so many of the characters not only strippers, but also sex workers?
Ok, so let's just say that Trine has ties in that industry and so friends, but don't they ever just wear casual clothes? Apparently not. In another scene one of these women is drawn in a shirt in one panel, but in the next panel where she's sticking her body out a window to yell down at another character she has taken her shirt off. The only conclusion is that the artist wanted to draw big pointy boobs and pander to the male gaze, while alienating and devaluing/dehumanizing women.
Add to that a ridiculous plot involving sociopath hitman (how original), a clueless scientist girl, and a plot to hide a secret diamond mine that was discovered when an expedition uncovered mammoth remains in Russia. (The diamonds were apparently discovered buried in snow, already cut and glowing). The whole thing culminates with a woolly mammoth ride. I'm being serious here. Yeah.