Publisher: Titan Comics
Writer: Lavie Tidhar
Artist: Paul McCaffrey
Letterer: Simon Bowland
Released: February 5th, 2020
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen meets Sherlock Holmes in Titan Comics’ latest series: Adler. This new series picks up the tale of Irene Adler herself, and she is on the hunt. She’s going to be collecting a group of women she trusts implicitly. All with the goal of taking down Moriarty himself.
This new miniseries is written by Lavie Tidhar, drawn and colored by Paul McCaffrey, and lettered by Simon Bowland. It’s a series perfect for die-hard fans of this dynamic woman – and doesn’t require you to have read any series previously in order to be able to dive in. I for one had no problems, though I certainly wouldn’t mind a bit more information here and there (for curiosity’s sake).
Adler #1 was an interesting yet complex read. I went into this series knowing that it would feature other strong and independent women, while still expecting most of the focus to be on Adler. That may become true later. But this series was afraid to start off by introducing us to the other ladies in this group, namely the nurse and presumably newest member to the team.
Her backstory was a fascinating one, albeit a heartbreaking read. They did an excellent job of creating somebody so compelling, while also raising curiously about her and her connection to the story as a whole.
Don’t worry, the issue did get around to introducing us to Irene, and she’s as spirited and observant as ever. She’s picked up the trait of declaring observations (and then explaining how she came to that conclusion). It’s not always an endearing habit, as we all well know. But she pulls it off nicely.
The (re)introduction of Moriarty went about as well as one might expect. That is to say, his character is exactly what I had hoped and expected: he’s dark and brilliant, and utterly unafraid to make a move, or in this case, make a warning perceived as a move.
There’s something very charming about the artwork of Alder #1. For starters, I really appreciated the inclusion of character designs at the beginning of the issue. It was a quick refresher and allowed readers to be able to immediately know who is who. Given the varied cast, that’s an important bit of information to go in with.
The series is highly stylized and influenced by the time period, which again, is really perfect. I particularly enjoyed the level of expressiveness included on the faces. There’s one expression in particular (one of horror, naturally) that will make me giggle every time I see it.
The color palette is rich and beautiful, and I could happily look at it all day long if you let me. I love how it was all complementary, even while fitting the period and sometimes more somber nature of the story.
Adler #1 was not quite what I expected, but I did still find it to be a highly entertaining read. I’ll be curious to see where this series goes. And how far they’ll able to push the plot. It seems unlikely that they’ll have the hunt be a successful one, but hey! This series could surprise me, and wouldn’t that be something?