Reviewer: Paul Sebert
Story Title: N/A
Story by: Jay Faerber
Penciled by: Andres Oibce
Colored by: Nester Pereyra
Lettered & Designed by: Ed Dukeshire
Publisher: Image Comics
You know it’s truly hard not to start to review this one-shot from Image without some kind of a rant on the current lack of titles on the racks starring small female leads. Granted that’s been a problem within the industry ever since Dr. William Moulton Marston put a collection of his weirdo bondage fetishes onto paper and called the book “Wonder Woman.” So I’ll implore to you readers to pick up this delightful book, not just because it’s one of the few titles with strong female leads, but also because it’s a damned enjoyable little ride.
The star of “Firebirds” is 15-year-old Emily Reed who is one day whisked from her private boarding school by her grandfather. She’s shocked to learn than mother Emily Reed is the super-heroine named Firebird, and that she’s clinging to life after being stabbed by a villain named Zero. Emily needs a blood transfusion and Rebecca’s the only person suitable, as she’s apparently inherited her mothe’s powers.
As predictably follows, Emily has to come to grips with being a superhero, while Rebecca learns how to bond with the daughter she’s separated herself from for so long. As you might have guessed, things ultimately boil down to a final confrontation with Zero.
Mother-daughter dynamic aside, Firebirds doesn’t do much new, but it does pretty much everything right. The title characters are inherently likeable. The art by Andres Ponce is stunning, calling to mind the teen-oriented DC books of the later 90s such as Stars & S.T.R.I.P.E and Impulse. The colors by Nestor Pereyra are stunning and vibrant. It’s hard not to enjoy the sequence in which Emily tries on her costume for the first time.
My one real complaint is with a bit the violence shown in this title. This story could have easily fit into a family friendly title, but alas the opening sequence in which we see a bloodied, injured Rebecca feels more like a sequence from Bloodhound than it does with the rest of the title. Another sequence that’s supposed to show just how depraved the villain Zero is almost laughably over the top.
Still even with it’s somewhat cringe inducing violence, Firebirds is a quite-enjoyable ride well worth taking the time to track down.