I liked the first story arc on “It Girl and the Atomics” a lot; Jamie S. Rich and Mike Norton took a character that I’d previously not been interested in and gave me all the right hooks to grab my attention. With “It Girl and the Atomics” #8, Rich and Norton have taken that a step further; they’re showing that they had more than a single idea in the tank, and turn out a solid two-part story that makes good usage of It Girl’s powers and holds your attention from start to finish.
“It Girl and the Atomics” #8 finishes up a rescue mission performed by It Girl, as she goes up against an old woman and her killer robots while trying to get a scientist and his mysterious invention out of their hands. What’s nice about “It Girl and the Atomics” #8 is that I feel like you don’t need to know anything else about the character or the “Madman” parent title to have a good time with this story. This is a classic superhero story; It Girl’s personality and powers are both easy to understand, and they’re what carry the plot through from start to finish.
Rich has a lot of fun coming up with all sorts of things that It Girl can do with her matter-absorption/mimicry ability here. Every time she grabs an item and turns into something else, it’s both a clever way to get out of a bad situation, and fun at the same time. It’s that subtle sense of humor that is part of Rich’s ace up his sleeve with “It Girl and the Atomics” #8; taken entirely seriously it might not be quite so much fun, but Rich encourages you to chuckle along with him as It Girl turns into all sorts of different objects throughout this two-parter. It’s a strange power and Rich manages to make it something that you can both grin at and appreciate its inventiveness.
I also appreciated the end to this story; with the scramble for everyone to get the professor’s strange new device, the decision on what to do with it felt satisfying even as it also doesn’t rule out the possibility for a follow-up down the line. It’s not the typical solution for a story like this, but Rich makes it feel satisfying.
I don’t know how Norton draws so many different comics at any given moment, but “It Girl and the Atomics” #8 is yet another one that he does so with skill and grace. He’s great at the action moments, like It Girl vaulting off the back of a hulking robot, or crashing through a window with a strange new form thanks to her abilities. He also makes her expressive, and considering that her mask hides her eyes (which are normally one of the easiest body parts in comics with which to have a character display emotion) that’s a nice feat. The art here is well-proportioned, shows good storytelling chops, and doesn’t cut corners; we’ve got nice full backgrounds and lots of panels per page.
“It Girl and the Atomics” #8 is another enjoyable issue from a fun series. I’ve said it before but it bears repeating: Michael Allred should be proud of the life that Rich and Norton have brought to his characters. If you’ve not sampled “It Girl and the Atomics” up until now, #8 is a good a place as any to begin. Take a look, you won’t regret it. This is out-and-out fun.