Monday, 4 April 2016

Paper Girls, Volume 1 Review (Brian K. Vaughan, Cliff Chiang)


Small town America, 1988, and it’s the very early morning after Halloween. Four newspaper girls out delivering see black hooded figures skulking around the neighbourhood and discover a flying saucer in a basement. Then everyone disappears like it’s the goldurn Rapture and pterodactyls are appearing in the skies! Did someone say armour-wearing Rastafarians? And look - a flying ball of stuff that makes you relive your entire life! Makes sense to me! Wait, what’s going on again…? 

Brian K. Vaughan returns to his comfort zone writing a comic about sassy teens spouting clever dialogue and joining him for the ride is Cliff Chiang, fresh from his celebrated run on Wonder Woman with writer Brian Azzarello. So was Paper Girls any good? Nope! Vaughan can write convincing dialogue for young characters but places them within a nonsensical plot that’s all over the shop. 

This is a time-travel story that’s also an aliens invade story that’s also an ‘80s nostalgia trip (boy am I fucking sick of those - up yours, Ernest Cline!). Our four main characters stumble through the book not really knowing what they’re supposed to do, bemused the entire time by everything, just like the reader is! I guess it’s setup for… something… and I suppose it’s meant to be… fun? I was annoyed primarily, sleepy the rest of the time. 

Cliff Chiang’s art is good – he sure knows how to draw! - and Matt Wilson’s colours make them pages look right nice and stuff. I didn’t have a problem with the art, it was perfectly fine. Did I loves it though? Eh… 

Everything else? Bah, I didn’t care about the paper-thin story that didn’t know what it wanted to be. Vaughan’s very hit and miss with me and Paper Girls definitely falls in the miss category. Check out his new (and free!) digital series, Barrier, on his Panel Syndicate site instead - Paper Girls is toilet paper!

Paper Girls, Volume 1

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