Advance Preview/Review THE DEATH-DEFYING DR. MIRAGE #1


THE DEATH-DEFYING DR. MIRAGE #1 (of 5) (VALIANT FIRST)
Written by JEN VAN METER
Art by ROBERTO DE LA TORRE
Cover by TRAVEL FOREMAN (JUL141476)
Blank Cover Variant also available (JUL141477)

Death was just the beginning…

Doctor Mirage talks to the dead…but the only spirit Shan Fong can’t find is that of her late husband, Hwen. Instead, America’s favorite semi-retired paranormal investigator is haunted and raw, using her gift to solve homicides and bring peace to the recently bereaved. But when a big-time occultist with a classified military past hires her for a special job, Shan discovers a lead that might close the greatest mystery she’s ever tackled – how to get Hwen back. Now, Doctor Mirage must enter the undiscovered country and cross all the realms of the underworld, if she has any hope of rescuing the man she loves…or be forever lost beyond the earthly plane.

$3.99 | T+ | 32 pgs. | ON SALE 9/3/14 (FOC –8/11/14)

REVIEW

Issue 1 of the new series from Valiant presents an interesting mystery with many interesting twists and turns along the way in this solid first issue from Jen Van Meter and Roberto De La Torre.

The premise for this book is interesting with the solicits describing it as; “World-renowned parapsychologist Dr. Mirage and her husband Hwen were madly, deeply, stuff-of-legends in love – until the day a tragic accident stole Hwen away. Now, Dr, Mirage will have to use every ounce of her training and talents in the mystic arts to do the one thing Hwen taught her never to do – journey across the realms of Deadside and bring her love back to the land of the living.” This is exactly what we get in this first issue which gives a great introduction to the character of Dr Mirage, however, this where a problem with the book shows, Dr Mirage from the impression you get in this first issue just is not that likeable. You understand that she has been through some very traumatic experiences in her life and the scene where she is introduced through Van Meter’s great talent as a writer the pain she is experiencing at interacting with the deceased loved ones of a group of lost individuals. She however, comes across as very cold, almost confrontational and whilst it works and is how the character would react I seemed to follow the events around the character for than themselves, hopefully in further issues you get to see more sides of Dr Mirage that allows you to warm to her. The mystery that is set up throughout this issue though is intriguing, you are not sure who is playing who in this situation and the second issue begs to be bought just to see where the set up in this occult detective story goes.

De La Torre’s art has what I thought was a very Alex Maleev like quality to it. A more sketchy style that evokes the occult undertones that permeates throughout the issue. The colors are very muted in places but, bright and vibrant when they need to be. Visually my favorite part of this book is again the opening scene when communing with the dead, the choice is taken to leave the dead relatives as white inked figures, and it really stands out especially the expressions on the characters faces. You can tell the departed love their significant others even before and words are spoken in those panels, its utterly breath-taking.

Dr Mirage is a great first issue, minor gripes about the characterization aside it does everything anyone could want in a first issue. It gives us a great introduction to the main character, sets the tone for the book really well and provides an interesting mystery that will have you wondering just what will happen next.

4/5


By Matt Deery

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