Having fun at a comic show is a matter of making fun for yourself. If you like celebrity and media premieres, the big Comic-Con shows are a good bet. If you like spending time with comic artists you like, smaller shows are the way to go. And if you, like me, rejoice in explosions of creativity in independent comics, then shows that celebrate people who make, read and love comics are a lot of fun. Of all the shows I attend, Comitia, TCAF, MoCCA and Queers & Comics are the ones that I enjoy the most. Not because I don’t love a three-ring media circus or 10,000 vendors all crammed into a huge space, but because of the sheer energy of creativity.
Today I am enjoying the final day of the Toronto Comics Arts Festival in Toronto and thought it a great day to speak of a comic I picked up at the MoCCA Fest in NYC, sponsored by the Society of Illustrators after they acquired the titular Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art.
This year I went primarily to see a lot of people I already knew and throw money at them. I picked up the print version of Power & Magic there and literally spent my last few buck on today’s acquisition.
Ellen Lindner’s The Black Feather Falls, is the Agatha Christie-esque murder mystery comic with a team of women leads that I needed.
Tina Swift is an American living in 1920s London, in hopes of avoiding familial pressure to marry and to get herself a career. Tina is working as a shopgirl, but hopes to become a newspaper reporter. When she attempts to see a man about a newspaper job, she encounters a dead man on the street, next to which a black feather has fallen. Also strangely, she cannot find the man with whom she was supposed to meet at the paper. Instead she encounters his snarky, somewhat bitter secretary, Miss MacInteer.
The absence of MacInteer’s boss and the black feather, launch Swift and MacInteer into a massive mystery that involves strangely insular islands off the coast of Scotland and the London underworld. The two women come to rely on and trust one another and, in the end turn up to be a great team of reporters…and detectives.
There isn’t any relationship developing between Swift and MacInteer in this story. The book itself is rated appropriate for all ages, and lacks significant violence or sex. That said, don’t underestimate the power of fandelusion. I could easily see them having an ill-advised fling. ^_^
But, more importantly, a team of adventuress-detectives have been born and I know I need more of those!
Art – 7 Not sophisticated, but fun
Story – 8 We all need a little female detective teamwork from time to time
Characters – 8 They rub each other the wrong way, but make a good team, just the way they should
Yuri – 0 for real, 2 inside my head
Service – 0
Overall – 8
So if you too enjoy a spot of original comics story-telling and all the 1920’s detective pairs you can get, you’ll want to take a look at The Black Feather Falls.