Comic Book Review: Rat Queens Special: Neon Static
This right here is another Rat Queens special that any fan would be looking forward to who loves everything about the world around these misfits. If there’s one thing you can’t deny, it’s the consistent potential in storytelling that Kurtis Wiebe always takes advantage of whether it is dealing with supporting characters or alternate stories like this. Taking a ride to an alternate and futuristic world is as bold as it gets with this one.
The idea itself of a future for the Rat Queens is fun because that can mean a lot of things without a specific date in mind. For most people, you think future as in where technology and advancements reign supreme, and by that I mean where they go wild with everything that seems stylized and flashy. I mean it’s still futuristic, but doesn’t take it to an extreme. For the world of Rat Queens, a cyberpunk theme to this was all very unique since the fantasy element is the one thing you know they wouldn’t part with for this story. Being a story of its own, there was nothing to do but allow it to tell itself. I found myself entertained by the idea that in this alternate future they could be an elite team of shadow operatives. That makes sense for them, as well as the change to their specialties that take on a modern shift.
What is fun about this story is how we are introduced to a version of the team that is pretty much back to basics. This is them without any of the baggage they were carrying from the past, or things from the past catching up to them. All that mattered was what lied in front of them which was stopping this anonymous fiend and fighting whoever got in their way. Violet was still the Queen carrying the biggest gun, Hannah was still very much destructive and foul-mouthed, Betty more restrained, though it was probably Dee who changed the most going from cleric to hacker. She came off a bit more daring in this story.
Now the plot here was pretty straightforward to understand once you knew the objective of the Rat Queens. It was only the period of time that changed, but they were still up to no good as they were fighting on the right side, but against the wishes of those in authority. There was great pacing to this as well being another one-shot. With little to need to explain, it was all going from one point to the next for the Queens. There was honestly no shortage of action and adventure which is what makes this memorable. Nothing about the obstacles they faced either was normal which was a great choice considering you wouldn’t want the Queens to do what they do and hold back. What completed the package was the bits of humor thrown in that brings it all together. It is the end in particular that will end this story with a smile since who they were hunting was not all that he was hyped up to be.
The artwork for this one-shot took some time to warm up to. It wasn’t bad, but was not exactly my cup of tea when it comes to fantasy or cyberpunk themes. Plus, when you’ve already grown attached to the art from the ongoing, everything else kind of looks like static. My main problem was the detail and work that went into the characters themselves. The eyes and expressions distracted me at the worst times. When that wasn’t the case, everything else I could appreciate which was unique and creative. As I pointed out above, the enemies they faced here were a perfect blend of fantasy and futuristic. I think what stood out to me most was the *Spoiler* dragon they fought, because you will never see a dragon like that or with that kind of body composition. Most of the scenes with Dee I found appealing for the way Kirkby still managed to incorporate the tentacles and what not into what she wore and how she hacked.
Rat Queens Special: Neon Static is another worthwhile story to add to your collection if you are a fan of everything Rat Queens main story or not. Neon Static is the most and bold and out there, succeeding because no matter the differences the Queens were true to who they are at the core.