Here I was thinking that I had this series pegged. I don’t mean that I know where it’s going or how it’ll end, but I did think that I had the format and structure down for the most part. Guerrero narrates the issue and he’s basically a dude with his heart in the right place. Then this issue came along and just smacked up everything I know and yet made me like the series even more. I’m pretty sure I’ve pointed this out every issue, but I’m so glad that this story exists in comic form. It’s why I love comics! You’d never get a video game with this story and Hollywood isn’t likely to take a chance on it because it disagrees with so many of their morals. I mean it’s a comic about animal rights activists that are total badasses rather than Peta; noble intentions, but damnit if they aren’t really annoying.
In the last issue we found our heroes cornered by the cops as they came out of the science lab with the rabbits. The cops are a bit clueless though and think that it’s a pledge gone wrong. Jeanette plays along and tells them that she’s a student trying to get into Delta. A call comes over the radio that a cop has been shot and the cops take off after telling them to wait for campus police. Sure it’s a bit unbelievable since more than likely one cop would have been left with them while the others took off, but hey I’m willing to excuse it considering where the story headed from there. Damon and Jeanette can’t believe it, but instead of taking off instantly Damon throws a rock through a window and howl’s at the moon.
Damon’s very different in this issue and becomes a bit more violent. Maybe that’s just my interruption, but the rock through the window is only the tip of the iceberg when it comes to his acting out. He texts Jeanette to apologize for being childish and she nearly sends him back a message biting his head off, but decides against it since she doesn’t know who could be picking up on their conversation. There’s plenty more to the story, but at this point everything that happens really connects to the ending which is really good.
The pacing of this series is very different from average comic books and that’s a good thing. It’s not really broken up into three acts, but instead has several connecting scenes that attach the narrative to one another. It’s something that works because it’s a comic book and the medium is versatile that way. I enjoyed the fact that Jeanette narrates a lot of this issue. It gives the reader a different view of both Damon and Jeanette. Damon comes across reckless, angry and violent; while Jeanette is more mature and less “holier than thou” which is how I felt her character was even in the last issue. Instead she’s more professional and a pretty good balance to Damon’s character. There seemed to be an underlying love story for the series, but with the events of this issue I don’t think that’ll happen and I’m actually kind of glad. If it still happened it wouldn’t hurt the story, but I find it more interesting with that element removed.
There isn’t a ton of action for this issue, but the art really nails it. The action sequences come off very dynamic and give the series a distinct look because of it. When Damon is destroying Bassi’s car and home, it’s very intense. When he slaps the paint/blood on the car you get the sense of the splatter and destruction. The same is true when he floods Bassi’s house with a hose after breaking a window. It’s intense and captures how out of control Damon is.
I’m digging this series in a big way. Does it have more than four issues in the tank? I don’t know, but I would definitely continue to give it a shot. Stories like this are why I read comics and more importantly why I read indie comics. I can’t pretend to care about Thanos’ baby momma drama or Ultraman’s Krypotnite addiction when I have urban ninjas rescuing animals from science labs. The funny thing is the concept for the first two I listed are actually more acceptable in comic book form that the last. That’s jacked up so make sure you support Liberator.
Writer: Matt Miner Artist: Javier Sanchez Aranda Publisher: Black Mask Studios Price: $3.50 Release Date: 9/11/13