Pick of the Week

October 29, 2003 – Queen & Country #19

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Story by Greg Rucka
Art by Carla Speed McNeil

Published by Oni Press | $2.99

It was a light week, but nevertheless, Queen & Country continues its winning streak. I think Greg Rucka’s tale of international espionage is up there with Powers with the most Picks of the Week.

This issue read like an action movie. I even moved my eyes over the panels like I was reading secret documents. I was going through the pages so fast to find out what happened next that I had to willfully slow myself down so it wouldn’t be over so quickly.

This issue continues on the current arc with Tara having just been attacked by the local thuggery of T’Blisi, and the new Minder #3 has just been killed, fresh from his entrance into the special ops world. Tara is quickly cornered and captured, and of course, action ensues. It ends up that Paul Crocker, head of Special Operations has to make a tough decision, and his past (As seen in the mini Queen & Country: Declassified) is weighing heavily on his mind. And everyone else seems to want to remind him about it. It’s a great personal conflict happening in the middle of a quick moving action story. And it keeps getting better.

As I’ve said before, McNeil is an excellent artist, who handles the quiet and the loud moments exceptionally well. Her work in black and white has more depth and character than most artists’ work in full color. In a relative few simple and expressive lines, she conveys so much emotion and feeling. I think she may be my favorite of all the artists on Queen & Country so far. If for no other reason, McNeil seems to be the best at differentiating between characters. I’ve had no trouble at all telling who’s who when I read this book. And if I did lose track, they always include a handy guide on the back inside cover to help keep score.

I never want this book to go away. It’s consistently one of the best books published in comics today and you should be reading it, and helping make Greg Rucka and Oni Press very rich.

D.Ops out.

Josh Flanagan
Too Much of a Pansy for the Secret Service
josh@ifanboy.com

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