Brandon Borzelli’s Geek Goggle Reviews
The New York Five #1 of 4
Vertigo Comics (DC Comics)
Wood & Kelly
The sequel to the graphic novel titled, “The New York Four” begins the second semester for the group of college freshmen girls living in New York City. Wood makes sure the reader that hasn’t read the first graphic novel is caught up with a nice recap page complete with character introductions. This particular issue is mostly a get to know the characters issue with some plot set up. It’s a good opening issue that offers something different than the usual stuff found on the comic book shelves.
The four main characters: Lona, Merissa, Ren and Riley reconvene after their winter break at their apartment. Each one seems to have some problems that the others know about. Each seems to have much deeper problems that the others do not know about. As one of the characters mentions in a therapy session – they are all basket cases. This seems to be clear.
Perhaps the one with the highest level of drama is Merissa. Merissa has let her job slip landing her on probation. The others aren’t even sure if she’s enrolled in classes and none of the others seem to spend any sort of time with her as she is always disappearing. It seems that her absence isn’t because of boyfriends but because of family problems. She looks to be on the verge of cracking.
Speaking of cracking, the character that appears to have the most leftover storylines from the first graphic novel is Riley. This comic book shows just how messed up her head is from the love triangle she was caught in with her sister and her sister’s boyfriend. Riley needs stability from somewhere and it only seems to get worse in this issue.
The other two characters have their own subplots that don’t appear to put them on par with the others but are no less interesting. The fifth character, surprisingly, is not Riley’s sister as the character run down would have you believe, but the homeless girl, Olive that only appears in one panel but is mentioned in the plot summary in the front.
The art is amazing. Kelly hits all the right notes with the delicate features of each of the girls in the issue. The breathtaking black and white makes the story feel so much more dramatic and adds a sense of loneliness to the situations that the girls find themselves in. The art alone is worth the price of admission.
Opening issues are tough for a mini series. There is so much ground that has to be covered while getting the story under way. It’s nearly impossible to achieve this with four main characters, all with their own plots. However this comic book establishes everything that’s needed to tell a good story while setting up enough for the rest of the series. If you are looking for something completely different, something that deals with real life for young adults then this issue is worth picking up.
3 out of 5 Geek Goggles