OH! As if we needed another reason to love Paul and the stories he can tell, along comes Mystery Girl. Not only is this utterly charming, fun and full of this weird psychic stuff but it also has this whole vibe about it that makes it irresistible. I’ve read a lot of comics in my forty some odd years of being a fan, collector, devourer and reviewer of comics but I’ve not come across a first issue that made me feel this way. This is the absolute perfect first issue.
Trine is a sheer delight. She’s a local legend and a familiar fixture on her street as we see her on the way to set up her sidewalk detective agency. The way we are introduced to her and what she can do is perfectly done. The neighborhood folks who know, accept and enjoy her company mixed with results of her work and showcasing those call upon her so as not to call attention to themselves is all done in a way so that as a reader we get this super clear look at just what she can do.
While all that is going on we are introduced to a man who well let’s just say is the opposite of everything bright and optimistic that Trine represents. I love his little monologue after the fact of what he’s done. He is like the yang to her yin it’s the kind of symmetry that’s immediately recognizable and seems to be missing when creating these kinds of characters.
Alfie is one of those rare finds he reminds of Mr. Farley, the kind you would swear was gay but he could just be that eccentric it’s hard to tell. Still this is the most in-depth look we get at her ability to know everything. As well as learning more about her in the process like the fact that she couldn’t always do this and how it happened, to the best of her knowledge. Plus the fact that she can solve all mysteries except her own which is utterly fantastic!
So I loved the way she receives her last client of the day and the deal that is struck and the upcoming major part of this story. The aftermath of that is also freakin’ awesome and i’m gonna go out on a limb here and say Trine is bisexual for those that pay attention to that sort of thing. It also really fleshes her out more as a person and the reasons behind why her offer is what it is. Also the last page makes me happy and intrigued and leaves me with all sorts of these happy tingly feelings!
Then there’s the interior artwork. It is just as charming, sweet, dynamic and expressive as the characters themselves are. Sure it’s got that comic book style to the characters, something that shouldn’t be overlooked, but it also has these moments where the world around them is wonderfully realistically portrayed that it’s almost like colorforms. I mean dayum this really is all around the perfect first issue.
Mystery Girl #1
Dark Horse Comics 2015
Written by: Paul Tobin
Illustrated by: Alberto J. Alburquerque
Coloured by: Marissa Louise
Lettered by: Marshall Dillon
Reviewer: Steven Leitman
Summary: TRINE HAMPSTEAD knows everything. For London’s premier sidewalk detective, no mystery is too small, or too weird—and she truly knows it all, from your most personal secret to the details of the deepest, most incredible conspiracies. The only thing Trine doesn’t know is how she knows everything.