There are three words at the end of this comic that make me sad. Those words are “to be concluded,” and they make me sad because I’ve really enjoyed this series a lot. The story of a post-Rapture Earth, Strange Girl has as its protagonist Bethany Blake, born of demons but in actuality good down to her soul. Bethany’s best friend is a foul-smelling, cigar-smoking, obnoxious blue demon named Bloato, and she’s accompanied on her quest by a pair of lovers, one a demon and the other a very religious man. The combination of these characters has been unique, thoughtful and exciting. As the team fight to escape the clutches of the demons that walk the Earth, the group becomes true friends. They grow and change and evolve as the story goes on, giving Strange Girl a very unique sort of chemistry.
On the other hand, I shouldn’t be surprised that this series is coming to its end because there are warnings and portents all over the comic. Jesus Himself appears, and seems to have a divine purpose for Bethany, saying at one point, “the girl must perish in a way that pleases God for our plan to work. She must repent and accept Christ prior to expiration.” Meanwhile the demon Belial, Bethany’s father, appears above the Eiffel Tower to try to enlist Bethany in his fight against Heaven: “We can stop God’s madness – you could live your life here with your friends. You can have all you desire without compromising yourself for God’s approval.”
Yes, Bethany appears to be the most important living person in an undead world, and her ultimate fate seems to be completely in doubt as this series gets ready to wind up. I’m sad to see the series go, but I’m excited to see how Remender brings all the strings together. No matter what he does, this series has succeeded in creating a complex and bizarre world in which characters really grow and change as people.
Peter Bergting’s art is effective in this issue. Demons are effectively frightening, and the scenes of Heaven are effectively enticing. More importantly, Bertging does a good job of making the characters sympathetic through his portrayal of them. Bloato especially is a very intriguing character under Bergting’s artwork; in one panel he looks almost like a rag doll.
This issue is kind of the metaphorical calm before the storm. Bethany and Bloato even play a game of catch to pass the time. But next month promises to bring a new level of Hell to Bethany Blake’s life. I, for one, can’t wait.