Posted on September 8, 2012 AT 02:40pm
The first ongoing series from Aspen Comics continues, with the culmination of their first story arc, “Life After Death”. Following exiled Executive Assistant Lily, the issue seemingly ends her arc, while delivering plenty of violence, explosions, and plot twists. Written by Vince Hernandez, with art by Jordan Gunderson, Charlie Mok, Teodoro Gonzalez and letters by Josh Reed, this book is an ambitious undertaking by Aspen Comics, introducing what looks to be several different main characters, one arc at a time, with Lily being the first.
The writing from Hernandez is stellar as always, as he leads readers down the trail of death, betrayal and manipulation that has been a staple of the first two issues, and something that the other other Executive Assistant titles have become known for. Lily is being hunted, along with all the other assistants, by a mysterious oil tycoon bent on their extinction. While Lily, who’s life had taken a pretty hard downward spiral full of drug abuse, exotic dancing, and the whole killing people thing, is being run down, a few other familiar faces from her time as an assistant begin to make themselves known, not only to the reader, but to Lily herself. With the introduction, presumably, of a new character into the story in issue #4, it will be interesting to see where Lily goes and what happens, as well as the connections to the other characters. While this was the end of the first story arc, it ended on a major cliffhanger that left more questions than answers, with very little, aside from a few lives, wrapped up.
The art team of Gunderson, Mok, Gonzalez and Reed live up the the standard for artwork that has made Aspen famous: brightly-colored, accurate human figures with dynamic backgrounds and a penchant for simplistic detail that always seems to leave something to be desired, but still works well with the style that Aspen is known for. It occasionally seemed like Lily was being drawn to be incredibly attractive just for the hell of it at some points, and not just for the sake of the task at hand, it didn’t detract away from the story too much.
Summary: Hernandez did a good job making a story with a lot of different elements to it flow, and while there were some points in not only the issue, but the series thus far that seemed a bit rushed, this is a solid title that fans of the previous installments, and the company as a whole will surely enjoy. Good writing, solid artwork and a multilayer story make for an interesting series thus far, especially at the end of the first arc in this issue.
The Good: Interesting Story, Multiple Plot Points
The Bad: Plot Flow Issues
The Ugly: Lack Of Detailed Artwork
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