06th Jul2015

‘Scarlett Couture #3′ Review

by Dean Fuller

Written and Drawn by Des Taylor | Published by Titan Comics | Format: Paperback, 32pp

ScarlettCouture3

Behind yet another gorgeous cover, Des Taylor enters the home stretch of his 4 issue miniseries. We get more of the same, which for me is perfectly fine. ‘Give them what they want’ seems to be Des Taylor’s theme running through this issue.

If you haven’t read the first 2 issues (and I highly recommend you should) Scarlett Carver is kind of a more glamorous version of Sydney Bristow from the spy show Alias, with a dash of Charlie’s Angels. Part secret agent, and part security chief for her family’s fashion house. The particular case she is currently investigating involves murdered supermodels, and Scarlett gets to look glamorous while kicking butt along the way. This issue sees us venture into that classic Bond locale, the underwater adventure.

Issue 3 furthers the plot slightly more than last, possibly due to the fact that Des Taylor has by now filled in enough details about the supporting cast and the world they inhabit that he feels comfortable pushing ahead with the main story. His writing remains solid, if not spectacular, though his affection for his creation shines through with his dialogue. He’s on quite tough ground anyway, as the spy genre has pretty much been covered from all angles, so it’s tough to find much fresh to say. It is a credit to Taylor’s enthusiasm that Scarlett does indeed feel like a breath of fresh air, though he conveys that best through the art.

There is not much more I can say about Des Taylor’s artwork, it is simply gorgeous. The action scenes look great, if slightly too beautiful to look at, and the characters scenes and environments are never anything short of amazing. I have no doubt Taylor’s scripting will improve over time, but he will always be a very visual storyteller who uses his art to do the heavy lifting.

For all that praise, I still feel as though the series is just lacking something. We all love sexy, fun, and glamorous but we also love substance and depth and Scarlett Couture just feels a little too light at times. This is partly due to the animation style artwork which, visually amazing as it is, limits the ability to inject darker drama into, say, the action scenes. We never feel Scarlett can’t kick or punch her way out of danger at any time, looking fabulous while doing so.

Des Taylor may very well be making the point that comics can be light and fun, with a sassy heroine with a nice line in witty dialogue. This is fine, we can all get behind that, but when we start to feel familiarity, the ‘we’ve seen it all before’ red flag, we, as readers, can soon lose interest. I hope not, as there is still plenty of fun to be had here. If all you want from your comics fix is to be entertained, you won’t go far wrong with Scarlett Couture.

**** 4/5

Scarlett Couture #3 is available now from Titan Comics.

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