Noir Volume #1 had my attention from the very first pages. Set in the realm of the classic anti-hero The Shadow, Noir focuses not on the icon suited man of legend, but rather the female hero and thieves around him. Esmeralda, also known as The Black Sparrow, has been double crossed by the man she double crossed. After stealing the moonstone, a relic of the Knights Templar, Black Sparrow finds the moonstone stolen from her in return. She seeks the Shadow for help, but finds him unable to do much good. Enter Miss Fury, a woman with grace, poise and the ability to fight in a costume that looks like a cross between Catwoman and Batman. The two embark to discover the true meaning of the moonstone, a Knights Templar tower and what the Mowhawk tribe has to do with it all. Add in a few folks wanting to start their own new society, and you’ve got a party.
Two femme fatales in one comic? You’ve got my attention. Add in a blend of the Noir genre and you have me panting to get my hands on this graphic novel. Victor Gischler tells a story that works for the time period, without being entirely misogynistic. Miss Fury and The Black Sparrow are written with sass and strength, and a female villain named Minerva even throws her hat into the ring with intelligence and fighting power. Andrea Mutti draws the women beautiful, the men strong, and the Templars mysterious. Vladimir Popov keeps the colors noir friendly and delightful.
With the Shadow as a background piece, The Black Sparrow and Miss Fury really get a chance to bond and show their stuff. Reading this graphic novel I was struck with the wonder of why so many women choose to cosplay Catwoman, but never Miss Fury.
Noir: Volume #1 is available August 5, 2014 from Dynamite Press.