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‘Super Spy’ HC (review)

Written and Illustrated by Matt Kindt
Published by Dark Horse Comics

 

Superspy is a tough one to review.

It’s from Dark Horse and the multi-award-nominated Matt Kindt. I like his very personal art style and the clever ways he utilizes all aspects of the graphic novel form. It’s quite clear he’s read a lot of spy fiction and probably more than a little spy-related non-fiction.

He seems quite the expert in spy work—not so much the 007-style spy work but the workaday spies who dominate the real world of espionage.

It’s impossible for me to deny the quality of Super Spy. It’s just that I didn’t care for it.

Each chapter, or dossier, in Superspy, is fairly self-contained and, as with any anthology, some are better than others.

My favorites were the slice-of-life stories. In this case, though, as with the complex world of espionage, things are never quite what they seem and many of these one-off tales actually do turn out to be part of a bigger whole overall.

As I said, it’s all very clever and creative, with all aspects of the art, color, lettering, and layouts in play at various times.

The big problem is that, at 452 pages, Superspy comes across to me as dull and repetitive. This aspect is not aided by the fact that the pages of the book are artificially aged and weathered, giving them a browned, sepia look throughout.

If you’re a James Bond fan, I’m not sure you’ll necessarily care for Matt Kindt’s Superspy. If you’re more a fan of the literary spies of, say, John LeCarre, you might be able to get into this book.

It’s a well-done book. Just not for me.

 

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