Adrienne Fox

Rocket Girl #3: Transcending Time to Kick Ass

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No one can keep Rocket Girl down. Not Quintum Mechanics in 2013 or 1986. Not the NYPD. With Rocket Girl, Montclare and Reeder have a headstrong protagonist on their hands. This teen is larger than life on the page due to this creative team’s art and storytelling.

Rocket Girl #3 cover from imagecomics.com

Rocket Girl #3 cover from imagecomics.com

Rocket Girl #3
Writer: Brandon Montclare
Artist: Amy Reeder 
Publisher: Image Comics 
Release date: December 31, 2013

Buy a physical copy of the previous issues and/or pre-order issues #4 and #5 to be mailed directly to you: Rocket Girl #3

Dayoung Johansson, aka Rocket Girl, is a member of the New York Teen Police Department in 2013. Her mission: to prevent a crime against time committed in 1986. Her story is told through two time lines. The past in 2013 is where we learn how and why Rocket Girl traveled in time. The present and future timeline starts in 1986, when she seeks to destroy the Q-engine. So much intrigue!

Rocket Girl #3 opens with Dayoung’s interrogation by the NYPD. Detective Ciccone is determined to find out what the deal is with this girl who is in possession of all kinds of Quintum Mechanics equipment. This girl’s got guts and smarts. Another cop interrupts Ciccone’s questioning and Dayoung takes advantage of it. This girl is sharp and always ready to act. She acrobatically makes her escape from the precinct. Once outside, Dayoung takes in the surroundings of 1986 and laments the lack of trust and community. She thought the society that spawned hers would be different, yet it is remarkably similar. People don’t even trust the cops. The next scene takes us back to 2013, when Dayoung, Detective O’Patrick, and Commissioner Gomez of the New York Teen Police hatch their plan to send Rocket Girl back in time. Their misdirection seems to work, but Dayoung finds two guards between her and the transporter. In 1986, Rocket Girl is reunited with Annie, Ryder, Gene, and Chaz at Quintum Mechanics. She glances out the window and spies two figures from her past. Her advice to her new friends, “Run!”

I like this Rocket Girl. She is particularly single-minded about her mission, which I admire. With Montclare’s characterization, Dayoung is physically and mentally strong, determined, self-possessed, and selfless. Well, maybe she is not entirely selfless. Being a hero and receiving accolades for rescuing people does have an upside.

Rocket Girl gets help from a group of young scientists employed at Quintum Mechanics. Annie, Ryder, Gene, and Chaz don’t have a big part in books 1-3, yet they each have a clear personality and point of view.  As far as a supporting cast goes, it is a decent mix of characters. The five of them are shaping up to make a great team.

Amy Reeder’s art is stunning. It is clear and easy to read the action. The manga influence, use of different perspectives, and over lapping frames and insets draw the reader into the environment completely. The layout and use of diagonal lines add to the flow and visual interest. Plus, Reeder’s covers are spectacular. In one image, Reeder conveys all you need to know about Rocket Girl.

Recommendation: Although Rocket Girl is not in the capes crowd, readers of Batgirl and Batwoman would like her.

 

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