Review by: flapjaxx

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Size: 0 pages
Price: 3.99

This review is going to deal as much with Fashion Beast as a whole as it will with the series’ fifth issue.

Simply put, Fashion Beast has exceeded my expectations to the point that it’s possibly the comic I look forward to most every month.

For those who don’t know, this is basically a comic adaptation of a movie script that Alan Moore and Malcolm McLaren (former manager of the Sex Pistols and all-around weird character) came up with over twenty years ago. It’s about a weird fashion scene that’s simultaneously underground and also world-controlling, it seems. The backdrop of the setting is nuclear armageddon, and oh yeah some of the main characters are boys who look like girls, or girls who dress like boys, or… something. Unsurprisingly, the film never got made.

Basically, every issue of Fashion Beast is very, very decompressed: It’s all so obviously a workmanlike, faithful translation of what the script indicated that the movie screen would show the audience. So, on the one hand, readers might be put off by that. After all, this is a $3.99 comic that only takes about five minutes to read.

What I’ve found, though, is that the curious story of Fashion Beast is simply intriguing enough to hold my attention. Why? Because there’s nothing else like this on the stands. Because it’s vintage Alan Moore, complete with references to tarot cards and nuclear winter. Because the art, courtesy of Fecundo Percio, is not only very, very good in and of itself but also very, very good at telling a very visual story full of intricate fashion, personality and nuance.

Most of all, however, I’m keen on Fashion Beast simply because… I don’t know what it is, exactly. Oh, I know tons of details. I know what the setting is. I know who the characters are, or at least what they look like on the outside and how they behave. And I know what’s going on . . . but I don’t know why. And it takes a very good production to withhold the “why” for so long (now halfway through its planned 10-issue run) and yet still not only reel me along but keep me thoroughly entertained.

I love the characters here. They are instantly recognizable and yet they transcend type. The little bits we get of their backstories and motivations have me hanging on every word.

If you just pick up this fifth issue, you’ll probably have no idea what’s going on and feel that someone has gypped you out of $4. Me, I breezed through this 21-pager in five minutes, was thrilled with it, and the last page had me wanting the next issue more than ever.

I can’t really say any more without spoiling anything. And I’ve purposely withheld some not-quite-spoilery specifics simply because, if anyone’s intrigued by this, I think they should experience Fashion Beast by going into it blind, or almost blind, like I did. It’s not the best comic ever. It’s not the best story ever. It might be the WORST thing Alan Moore wrote between 1985 and 1990. But, that said, it’s still in the running for best comic of the moment in early 2013 as far as I’m concerned.

Story: 4 - Very Good
Art: 4 - Very Good


  1. I liked this series for all of your reasons, but dropped it last issue because of the $4, 5 minute breeze through. I had the same criticisms as well. I was left wanting more of the outside the factory/ fashion stuff, more of the gang and nuclear winter, does it start to deliver more of that? I think ill pick it back up in the trade and read it all the way through.

  2. It’s really surprising the very few amount of people who seem to be reading this, you would think anything with Alan Moore’s name would should straight to the top of the pull-list.

    I’ve been a bit sceptical about the series, I didn’t think the character’s were anything special and nothing was really there to grab me but this was the best issue yet and took my full attention.

    Great review! Do you know how long the series is?

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