Review: Fearless Dawn #1

Fearless Dawn is quite possibly one of the funniest comics I’ve ever read. The entire style of the series is a weird mesh between the Rocketeer and Heavy Metal magazine. The main character Fearless Dawn works as a secret agent for the government, but is known for not playing by the rules… or even knowing them. This book is intentionally inspired by pulp comics and the fore mentioned series as well and all of it works seamlessly together to produce a style of comics that’s been missing in the market. The story opens with Dawn coming to pick up her jet. This is no ordinary jet as it’s actually too small to fit even her inside, instead she rides it more like a horse… or a bomb falling from the sky like in Dr. Strangelove. After picking up her jet she heads to Manitoba to steal a super drug that turns men into super strong ugly monsters. After flying in guns blazing Dawn is subdued by knock-out gas, no really knock-out gas it says it on the can. She’s then hauled away by a huge ugly man who is either permanently on the drug or permanently ugly. He locks Dawn up at the orders of his buxom brunette Captain. Soon another agent is dispatched to retrieve the drug and Dawn; agent Number 7 invades the base and is quickly beaten by the super powered Nazi soldiers and thrown into a cell with Dawn.

FD_COV_400The cliffhanger to the story is pretty silly, but it works for the story. I really enjoyed the book, it was fun and full of action and fighting and it knew what it was doing. This isn’t a story that takes itself too seriously and in fact it really felt like a throwback to a simpler time in comics. I also like the subtle sexuality that the book had; it didn’t ram it down your throat or make it extremely obvious but sprinkled in here or there.For instance a scene with Dawn and Number 7 in their cell; Number 7 is trying to bend the window bars and Dawn is bending over with her butt in the air for no real reason. This is probably the most noticeable example I can give you and even then if you weren’t paying attention you could miss it. It’s subtle in the way Elephantmen is, where it’s mostly the art not the dialog that’s sexy.

Creator/Writer/Artist Steve Mannion does a fantastic job on this series. I really enjoyed the look and the overall feel of the book; so much so that I bought the next three issues. Mannion’s art is very good and has almost a classy feel to it; on one hand he’s drawing a half-naked woman (Dawn)carrying guns and riding on a mini jet, but then on the other hand he’s drawing hideous man monsters that fill entire pages but all of it is really elegant. It’s a strange balance but Mannion pulls it off.

I actually picked this book up digitally and it’s available from either of the two digital giants Comixology or Graphicly, although I will say that Comixology offered a “special” edition with extra pin-ups in the back of the book for the same price as the regular issue. Granted, pin-ups in a digital comic is pretty pointless but it was some good art. If you’re looking for some good pulp inspired action with a buxom brunette fighting another buxom brunette then check out Fearless Dawn from Asylum Press.

Score: 4/5