“Molly Danger” sure seems like it has been a long time coming, but Jamal Igle makes it worth the wait. While the price might scare some readers away, the book itself is well worth it. Not only is it filled with wonderfully drawn art from Jamal Igle, the oversized format makes his wonderfully drawn art even larger for more entrancing enjoyment.
It isn’t very often that one creator can launch a project that celebrates comics, refreshes them and adds a new face to the medium. Jamal Igle does that with grace in book one of the “Molly Danger” series. Funded through Kickstarter, this project is 100% Igle, who serves as both writer and artist He gets an inking assist from Juan Castro with colors by Romulo Fajardo, Jr. and letters from Frank Cvetkovic. The visuals are nothing short of stunning. Every detailed superhero story that Igle has ever drawn has helped hone the artist’s craft for this assignment. Igle fills every panel with characters, setting and scenery, never once mailing it in for Fajardo to fill it in with a gradient or flat. For that, “Molly Danger” gains a world with borders, edges and depth. Igle’s characters are diverse and expressive and the action sequences are nothing but bigscreen.
On the writing side of this adventure, Molly is relatable, amusing and — most importantly — fun. As Medulla is hauled away in cuffs, Molly mocks the disembodied brain’s babbling, irritating the fiend even further. This plays out just fine in comics, but it’s tough not to imagine it animated, as Molly puppets her fingers to echo Medulla’s threats while bobbing her head back and forth in mock astonishment. It is actions like this that fill Molly with relatability, making her a character readers are going to want more of. Igle doesn’t stop with Molly though, adding an instant collection of foes in this first volume. Known as Super Mechs, the foes Igle introduces in Book One include: Medulla, a brain encased in an aquarium atop a cybernetically enhanced body; Slipscott, a speedster whose quickness comes from cybernetic legs; and Lil’ Cavey, a caveman of cartoonish proportions. The characters in Molly Danger’s world also mention Two-Fisted Tommy and Bonnie Double, but we don’t meet those characters in Book One.
“Molly Danger” Book One is a wildly enjoyable comic story and a magnificently different package, sure to leave an impression on readers. Comics get extra credit for super-secret organizations and cool acronyms. Molly Danger earns those points with Danger’s Action Response Team, or D.A.R.T., a group of handlers and assistants, including Austin Briggs, who becomes one of Molly’s closest confidantes through the course of this first volume.
Despite some editing hiccups (which are meant to be shaken out in a maiden voyage like this) Book One is a gorgeous collection that is as much coffee table book as graphic novel. The first book of “Molly Danger” is one recent release I have no problem recommending to readers everywhere. Some readers will definitely get more out of it than others, but in a medium starved for fresh ideas, new characters and increasing diversity wrapped in a fun story, “Molly Danger” answers the call. This is one of the most fun comics I’ve read this year and I personally cannot wait for Book Two.