Bettie Page: Unbound #1
Scribe: David Avallone
Illuminations: Julius Ohta
Scriptorium: Dynamite Entertainment
“Know then, O Prince that the warrior known as Bettie the Page was known for both her raven hair and quick wit. While not of this world long she overcame much.”
Such should read the opening of the latest adventure featuring Bettie Page. After our heroine’s last outing in which she saved the Queen of England and came face to face with the fantastic beast of Loch Ness, what’s next you may ask? How about the return of the Great Old Ones and the fate of the Universe?
Pulled into her own fabulous Freaky Friday foray filled with dimension hopping body swapping adventures Bettie finds herself in Hyperboria. Here our heroine seems to have traded bodies with one Sonja the Red. Now sword in hand and clothed only in said warriors trade mark itty bitty metal bikini Bettie sets off to find the Sorcerer’s Star and her way home.
In the first installment of Bettie Page: Unbound, the latest from the Bettie Page team at Dynamite removes our heroine from the world that she has inhabited in the last two series. Thankfully, it does not remove Bettie.
As usual David Avallone delivers a Bettie that is more than the typical Pin-Up queen. I’ve been reading Avallone’s Bettie Page since the first in the series and have thoroughly enjoyed them. While the typical Bettie adventure is grounded in our world they are often filled with the fantastic. Bettie has done everything in her James Bond adventures. From flying to fighting all with her own spectacular style for home and Queen and country.
Avallone’s Bettie is smart and sure of herself and is often written as if she’s out of her element but always seems to recover. This quick on her feet writing is often humorous and keeps the action moving. This is not to say the books are lacking in dialog, in fact some of the best writing in the books comes from Bettie speaking to those around her. Comic speech is often exaggerated and by its nature doesn’t feel natural. Thankfully, the Bettie Page comics do not suffer from this. This has allowed Avallone to craft some really great stories that would quickly spin out of control in the hands of a less talented writer.
To say that Ohta is getting better does the man a disservice. This implies that his earlier work is not as good as his latest offering and this is far from the truth. No, instead you have to accept it for what it is. Otha is in the process of moving from good to great. His figures are clean, well proportioned and easily readable. The action is fluid and easy to follow and he seems to have no limit onto what he can draw. Have you ever tried to draw a horse? There’s a reason Da Vinci was fascinated with them, they can be the ultimate challenge. Even with this said he’s a bit uneven in a few panels but for the most part he is brilliant.
Overall, the latest Bettie Page adventure which proves to be the most fantastic yet, is a fun romp through the fictional world of Bettie Page. Written with a wink and a nod to some of the greatest comics and stories of the past. Everything is here, from Stanton’s Muse to Lovecraft, Howard and Thomas. This is one for the fantasy fan just check your disbelief at the door.
The latest Bettie Page adventure proves to be the most fantastic yet!