Current Reviews


Liberty Girl #1

Posted: Saturday, August 5, 2006
By: Ray Tate

Writer: Dennis Mallonee
Artists: Mark Sparacio, Carrie Fink(c)
Publisher: Heroic

Liberty Girl doesn't seem to break new ground. There have been patriotic super-heroines in comic books before. Heroes like Wonder Woman, two different Miss Americas and Liberty Bell, just to cite a few, have flown through the panels of yesteryear's comics.

One must ask what makes Liberty Girl different from all of those who wore the red, white and blue as a symbol. Two words. Doc Savage.

Doc Savage is the grandfather of all super-heroes. Though a mortal man, he was in physique and intelligence the peak, and maybe just a little higher, of mortal man. Often called the Man of Bronze due to his deeply tanned skin, Doc and his operatives roamed the world of the nineteen thirties and forties to combat technological, criminal and cult menaces.

One of Doc's operatives was known as Theodore "Ham" Brooks, and he reappears in fitting character as a U.S. Senator in Liberty Girl. He does not represent the only tie to Doc Savage. Writer Dennis Mallonee's and artist Mark Sparacio's more than superficial knowledge of Doc Savage help makes Liberty Girl resonate. That's a hint.

The story begins on an Air Force outpost where a strange storm strikes. As the story continues we learn the inventive nature of the storm in the narration of Lt. Colonel Jacqueline Daniels, reporting the tale directly to Brooks, who has personal reasons for investigating.

Mallonee's setup of the story is nothing short of spectacular. He expertly builds and builds suspense, until you become so caught up in the story that you're thrown off guard when something momentous occurs toward the end. He also makes the history, real and imagined, simply so fascinating, you just don't expect an extra surprise that you should have seen coming long ago.

Liberty Girl benefits from Sparacio's outstanding artwork that pays attention to proportion, scale and expression, but Carrie Fink's contribution to the whole cannot be overlooked. It is her airbrushed colors that create a very convincing illusion that what you are reading is a pulp in the vein of Doc Savage that's been done in a comic book form. This illusion is very appropriate.

The story, the power and history of the heroine, the jaw-dropping artwork, all these aspects make Liberty Girl original, engrossing and gorgeous.

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