After devouring Revelations and Ultra: Seven Days, Danger Girl was the only TPB I had left to read from my last Amazon shopping cart. I had already, thanks to good old Fel, enjoyed this series written by Andy Hartnell and drawn by love-him-or-hate-him J. Scott Campbell. That time I'd really liked it and read it without even pausing to breath, but I never thought it to be the masterpiece Fel was claiming it was.
Anyway, he's been permanently talking about this series since then. He's been defending that it's probably the best one ever made. Well... now that I've read it again, my perception of it has changed, but not drastically. I don't know if Danger Girl is the best comic series ever made, but now that I'm more used to reading them (comics, that is), I can see why Fel thinks that way.
If you haven't read it, think James Bond meets Raiders (Campbell's favourite movie ever) meets Charlie's Angels. Add a little bit of Die Hard action and a Mission: Impossible (the first movie, of course) twist and there you are.
It's not a secret that co-creators Andy Hartnell and J. Scott Campbell wanted to change the way comics were back when Danger Girl was published. JSC says so in the prologue to this edition of the series. They were sick of comic plots being little more than gigantic soap operas, with no clear beginning or end. Why comics couldn't be more like movies? They were eager for one of those condensed two-hour (just six or seven issues) rollercoaster that, once it starts, doesn't let you breath until it has finished. That's what they tried to achieve with Danger Girl, and for the life of me they did it.
It's amazing the way Campbell's pages play with the story's rhythm, speeding things up on the action sequences and slowing them down on the more reflexive ones. And I can assure you, there're not many of those. Reading this comic without hurry, staring calmly at the drawings or rereading sentences, is not an easy thing. The way he plays with the frames makes the story flow as fast-pacedly as to make the eyes hurt from not even blinking.
Hartnell's dialogues are funny, direct, and usually right on spot. It doesn't really matter that this story is filled with one topic after another and cheesy one-liners, because in the end it's all about the fun. And, if every page is filled with scantily clad gorgeous women (and turtleneck-black-sweaterly clad men), then all the better. I swear I never saw before in my life so many semi-undone zippers.
This Danger Girl original series edition contains, besides JSC's prologue, a few sketchbook pages, a book cover (including alternate covers, some of them by field names such as Madureira or Ramos), and a Bruce Campbell intro, which pays the price of the whole thing by itself. And is he, the chin that could kill, who maybe writes the best critic that Danger Girl has received ever. In his own style, of course.
If you haven't done so yet, you better take a look at Danger Girl. The series, in the Evil Dead's leading actor words, "where the men are manly and the women all look like they just won a wet T-shirt contest".