Scarlet Veronica #1 (ADVANCE)


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Scarlet Veronica #1 (ADVANCE)


  • Words: Josh Ruggles
  • Art: Jason Moody
  • Inks: N/A
  • Colors: Justin Greathouse
  • Story Title: N/A
  • Publisher: Ape Entertainment
  • Price: $3.50
  • Release Date: Oct 29, 2008

Being the new girl in town is tough but when Veronica died and came back to life, she tapped into a whole new level of weird.

Writer Josh Ruggles is obviously a fan of the horror genre and he backs his comic with tips of the hat to everything from low-budget slashers to supernatural comedies but all the while keeping things at PG or maybe PG-13 rating. Is that enough, though, to tip Scarlet Veronica over the top?

Veronica Gainsburrow is new to the town of Raimiesville and her first day at Romero High School includes all of the traditions – the popular cheerleader picks on her and the dim-witted jocks think she is a candidate for the geek squad. But thanks to a demon with the power to summon an undead army, a portal between Hell and Earth, and Veronica risking her life to save fellow geek and classmate Brian, this girl’s life is about to take a turn to the dark side. Veronica died in an icy lake and came back to life… or did she?

Ruggles has written a love letter to horror movies in the form of a comic that is partly serious, partly pastiche, and partly spoof. It is very difficult to juggle all of these various attitudes keeping them flying and spinning and occasionally one of them drops. Thankfully instead of thudding, they tend to bounce back up where he can put them in motion again. One of those areas is with the somewhat tired cliché of the picked on new girl in the high school. Really there is little here that stretches the boundaries or puts a new spin on the old cliché. A few lines of dialogue also fall a little flat. On the other hand, the whole comic exudes this air of a teen and tween friendly animated Halloween special – something that is not seen very often either in comics or on TV (and why is that?).

The art, provided by Jason Moody, is also something of a hybrid… combining a lot of Manga influences with a cartoony, animated appearance. Sometimes it works but sometimes it seems rough around the edges. One thing Moody does exceptionally well, though, is play with "camera angles". He turns certain scenes on their head (almost literally) within the panels – which really gives this issue that animated TV show feel.

Scarlet Veronica isn’t a perfect comic yet. As I mentioned before, some of the dialogue comes off a little awkward and some of the situations feel forced and cliché. However, with an interesting take on the horror genre, a heroine whose alter ego looks a bit like a punk-goth cheerleader, and a tongue-in-cheek approach, there is a lot of potential here.

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