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Fade From Blue #3

writer: Myatt Murphy
artist: Scott Dalrymple

At only $1.50 a pop, Fade From Blue obviously makes a bargain on the comics' racks. And as Second 2 Some Studios' press releases make clear, the book has gained enough attention to warrant a listing in Wizard's price guide. The question you should be asking yourself, though, is "yeah, but how's the quality?"

Happily, Fade From Blue is more than a bargain, it's a value.

With the third issue out now, Murphy and Dalrymple have brought a lot of the characters into much sharper focus. In the case of the dark-haired Elisa, this sharpening also recasts a lot of her behavior. Her dialogue and appearance seem to have changed, too, to compensate for this slight but oh so crucial revelation about her age. We knew she was the baby sister of the family, but now it appears that she also poses as two years older than she actually is. When the inevitable (and necessary) trade paperback occurs, the team might want to go back and fix a few pages from the first two issues to make it a little more consistent. That's the beauty of trades: if you've got a fix to make, you can.

Much of the issue devotes itself to a flashback of the sisters' early days together. There's still a lot of mystery surrounding their individual tragedies, but Myatt has made that compelling, not frustrating. He also skillfully plants the seeds for their adult selves; the girls may be mothers to the women, but they're not exactly the same person. Without spelling it out, it's clear how these girls grew up to be who we've seen.

Also introduced is a key player, a somewhat mysterious older gentleman the sisters refer to as "Uncle." Roguish but in a likeable way (for now), the old man has some connection to their father, and enabled them to survive as a newly forged family in the face of their common tragedies. It's yet another piece of the puzzle to Marit's obsession.

Dalrymple's art gets better with each issue. Should Hollywood come a-calling (and this summer, they're calling everybody), the book's art should be their guide for casting. And a big help when it comes to storyboarding, because Dalrymple has a cinematographer's eye for composition.

Fade From Blue has accomplished its goal. It's got something for both male and female readers, told compellingly enough to keep both sides interested. And even the women's magazines articles in the back do the same - guys, hand this issue's back-up piece to your girlfriends (or wives) and hope that it explains a lot.


Derek McCaw


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