In Review: Trust Fall #1

A member of a crime family encounters trouble on a big score and it's a riveting read.

The covers: There are three covers to transport to your collection, if your quirk is good enough to find them. The Regular cover by Chris Visions has protagonist Ash Parsons dressed to the nines, her left hand up with her index and middle finger pointed like a gun. There are swirls of pink and white emanating from it, as if her pretend gun has some power. Spoiler: it does. This is a solid image of the lead that sets the reader up for the action of the book’s opening pages. Another stylish cover can be found on the Variant cover by Claire Roe. This has an image of Ash turned to the right. It seems like this is a bust shot of the character, but her jacket is present in a snazzy gold and black pattern that practically blends in to create the background. Behind the character is some tagging on a wall in hot pink and a full figured version of Ash, dressed very differently, is atop her fashionable one, looking as if she’s falling, though she has enough sense to take a shot at the reader with her right hand. Blood is spraying from her nose as she tumbles. This is gorgeous. There’s also a Heroes Convention Variant by Visions that has Ash again looking stylish, with a hat on, a scarf obscuring her neck, and her jacket collar up and open. Standing in front of the city she points her fingers at her head mimicking a suicide shot. A surprising pose for this protagonist, but still incredibly striking. Overall grade: Regular A, Variant A+, and Heroes Convention Variant A

The story: Writer Christopher Sebela packs a lot into this issue from Page 1. A close read is required to get a handle of this world. A warehouse guard is forced to leave his television and bong due to a loud noise. Raising a huge rifle and shouting a warning, he drops his weapon when he sees a young woman before him. She calls home, “Mama, it happened again. The man says its China. The picture…the picture with the big building with the shelfs? I didn’t meanta — I tried real hard –” There’s an unstated transition to the present, and Ash ends a phone call by saying the car needs to be sent. She makes her way out of the building going Baby Driver and using her fingers pointed like a gun to teleport the men trying to stop her. A Rolls Royce pulls up and she jumps in, just as the police begin to pursue them in their car. The chase over, Ash arrives home where a family meeting is occurring. This isn’t a normal family, as she’s part of a crime family. Some information is delivered that their position is going to rise, if they can “clear up some outstanding debts, pay our respects. Pay our dowry.” This leads to one big caper where Ash’s unique skills will be needed. Before the job, Sebela gives Ash some good normal time, showing what she does when not assisting her family. This broadens her character and I’m really interested to see more of her relationships there, such as with Nadia. The final three pages have good action, ending with a cliffhanger that truly is a “Now what?” moment. I liked the story, after reading it three times, and I liked how new information was presented to the reader through Ash’s definitions. Once I got a hold of the story, I really liked it. Overall grade: A-

The art and colors: Chris Visions artwork is gorgeous. The first page shows the reader exactly what visual experience they’re in for: five panels in the middle of the page comprised of irregular parallelograms that jarringly show the guard’s actions. Outside these panels, serving as the background, “something” is shown and the guard’s bugged out eyes to what he discovers. The final panel introduces young Ash looking worried. A turn of the page and Ash is wearing her incredibly cool clothing from the Regular cover on the phone surrounded by several expensive cars. When she turns on her tunes to get her into the groove of escape, Visions has the panel bleed of the page on either side to show the music pounding through her head: love it! The descent down a stairwell at the bottom of Page 2 is equally cool. When Ash goes into action the lines used for her transportation effect are just awesome. Plus, I have to give a shout out to the giant eyeball that’s barely peeking out between panels on 3 — you can never go wrong with giant eyeball panels. Car chases often come across horribly in comic books, but not here. The chase is fluid, vivid, and I felt every turn. The setting that’s fleetingly glimpsed on 7 is wonderfully detailed. The design of the characters at the dinner sequence is superb: their looks absolutely identify their character. The change in settings and colors on 12 dramatically shift the tone of the story, and they should considering how this location is very different from what preceded it. I really like how this color carries over to the next page and is employed as lipstick for Ash: it is her color. Pages 13 and 14 expand her everyday life and it’s detailed so the reader gets lost in these settings, momentarily forgetting what she does for money. The art becomes looser on 16 and 17, but there’s a reason for it doing so and it works well. This book has visuals to get lost in. Overall grade: A+

The letters: I love the dialogue font in this book. It looks unlike any I’ve seen in a comic before and adds to the stylistic visuals that Visions creates. Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou isn’t only a talented dialogue letterer, his whispers, obfuscated dialogue, Ash’s definitions, narration, computer text, and tease for next issue look great. I love the whispers, done in the same font as the dialogue, but much more smaller. It’s easy to read, yet conveys the lower level in which it’s spoken. The obfuscated dialogue occurs when the guards are yelling at her and she’s got her music cranked. It looks exactly as I’m sure my daughters hear me and my wife when we talk to them and they’ve got their earbuds in. The definitions are in a large font, with lower case letters — Hooray!, making it stand out from all other texts. There are sounds in this issue, but they look to be created by Visions onto his own work. Otsmane-Elhaou is definitely a letterer to watch. Overall grade: A+ 

The final line: A member of a crime family encounters trouble on a big score and it’s a riveting read. The story did take more than one read to get a handle on it, but I enjoyed it and want to see how it all plays out. The visuals are eye-popping thrillers, where colors are as key as the action on the page. The letters are stylish accompaniments to the visuals. If you don’t enjoy this, you deserve to have two fingers pointed at you. This is the first issue, so jump on now! Recommended. Overall grade: A 

To order a digital copy go to https://www.comixology.com/TRUST-FALL-1/digital-comic/776296?ref=c2VhcmNoL2luZGV4L2Rlc2t0b3Avc2xpZGVyTGlzdC90b3BSZXN1bHRzU2xpZGVy

To see the covers visit my Instagram account: patrickhayesscifipulse

Patrick Hayes was a contributor to the Comic Buyer's Guide for several years with "It's Bound to Happen!" and he's reviewed comics for TrekWeb and TrekCore. He's taught 8th graders English for 20 years and has taught high school English for five years and counting. He reads everything as often as he can, when not grading papers or looking up Star Trek, Star Wars, or Indiana Jones items online.
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