Tuesday, July 27, 2010

SCORPION: POISON TOMORROW, written by Fred Van Lente, art by Leonard Kirk

When she was 16, Carmilla Black's left arm flared up with deadly toxins, killing her prom date instantly.  Terrified, she fled, leaving behind her adoptive parents, the only family she ever knew.  She comes out of exile three years later when she learns they have been murdered.  Among their personal effects, she finds her real birth certificate-- including her birth mother's name.  She travels to the South Asian nation of Madripoor, where she was born, in hopes of finding some answers about her fatal sting and what her mother's been up to-- after being recruited by the multinational counterterrorism force SHIELD to do so.

A great espionage adventure with a splash of superpowers!  The spy thriller story deftly intertwines with Carmilla's own quest to make sense of her powers and her personal tragedies to build towards the big reveal of the reason for her existence.  Her hesitant romance with fellow tourist Troy is very cute, even though she has trouble trusting him-- due in no small part to her SHIELD handlers' paranoia over who he is and why he is interested in her (but that's not to say he's not hiding something...)  In fact, Van Lente handles all of her trust issues very believably, whether she's questioning Troy's intentions or even SHIELD's true purpose; it is very clear that Carmilla wants someone to trust, but she's been too hurt to do it easily. The art is crisp, clean and easy to follow.  Kirk is especially good at facial expressions-- even when Carmilla's face is half-covered by her mask, her emotions are clearly expressed in her eyes.

One pretty major complaint, though-- an over-arching question of the book is who killed her adoptive parents and why is never answered outright.  Plenty of theories are put  forward and fingers are pointed, but it's never definitively answered.  As far as I can tell, they planned on writing more and making it a series, but it got canceled for one reason or another.  It's frustrating, but it's not really a deal-breaker for an otherwise very enjoyable story.

You can read the first 11 pages here, and read what Van Lente had planned for future volumes!



  1. Cool <3 do you read manga, too?

  2. I read some manga but it's not my area of expertise. I'm sure I'll end up reviewing some at one point or another, though.

  3. What sort of manga have you read? :3

  4. I'm about halfway through Nana and FMA, and I've read the first volume of both xxxHolic and Fruits Basket, and I want to continue reading both of them.


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