By Daniel Vlasaty
Time travel is a confusing thing. It’s confusing for a writer. It’s confusing for a reader. It’s even confusing for the character doing the time traveling. Paper Girls #11 is the start of a new storyline, but it takes off right where issue #10 left off. With the girls stranded somewhere and sometime and things are confusing and they’re just as confused as the rest of us.
I was partially lost/partially confused while reading this issue, but it was okay because I have complete and total faith in Brian K. Vaughan’s writing and ability to tell a story. He gives little bits and pieces of the larger, overall story, teases the reader with this idea and that.
I loved this issue, but then again I love just about everything Vaughan writes, but in all honesty, not much happens here. The issue spent setting up some crazy shit and introducing some new characters. And we also get a bit of character development from the girls that has maybe been a bit lacking in the first two volumes of this story.
But it’s all very slow-burning. I really feel like he is going to take his time unveiling the story to us in the third volume. And that, to me, is both excellent and terrible. It’s terrible because I want to know everything that is going on here right freaking now, and it’s excellent because Brian K. Vaughan is just a great story teller, and I just know the story is only going to get better and better with each subsequent issue.
As far as the art goes, if you’ve read any of the previous issues of Paper Girls (and I know you have) then you know what to expect here. Cliff Chiang’s art is as amazing as ever. This entire issue takes place in a prehistoric (or future?) forest, so the backgrounds are mainly just trees and mountains and other foresty stuff. It’s a lot of greens and browns and blues, and it’s all perfect. Simple and perfect. What I really love about Cliff Chiang’s art are his faces. There’s a softness to them that I don’t think any other artist can even come close to.
It’s also fun to see what kind of new and weird and giant creatures he’s going to come up with; this issue has some kind of giant prehistoric sloth.
And then there’s Matt Wilson’s colors. If you’re not reading Paper Girls for the story or the art, you should at least check it out for the coloring. I’m always a fan of clean, solid colors. And Matt Wilson is one of the best at this. His color work is soothing, for lack of a better way to describe it.
But yeah, I loved this issue. I think it does a great job of setting the tone for the third volume. Brian K. Vaughan is one of my favorites, and with Cliff Chiang and Matt Wilson backing him it’s safe to say that this might be one of the best overall books coming out now. And it’s kind of comforting to know that I never know what the hell I am getting into when I crack open an issue of Paper Girls.
Paper Girls #11
Writer: Brian K. Vaughn
Artist: Cliff Chiang
Colorist: Matt Wilson
Publisher: Image Comics