Veil #1: Rucka Breaks New Ground with Veil
Greg Rucka’s Veil #1 was not what I expected. It is lyrical and impressionistic and definitely a departure from his other works like Lazarus, The Punisher, and Queen and Country. Yet, the characters in Veil still have Rucka’s trademark power and humanity, which is enhanced by Fejzula’s art.
Purchase a physical copy for to be delivered right to you: Veil #1 (Toni Fejzula cover)
A woman wakes up on a subway platform. She is naked and hurting, and surrounded by rats. (So, wow, it is quite an opening.) As this woman winds her way through the subway corridors, her words come to her in rhyming associations and verse. She emerges from the subway into a crowd of people and draws much attention. Lots of leers and jeers are lobbed at her. A few men threaten her well-being until one man finally steps up and offers this naked woman a coat. Dante’s kindness extends to taking Veil inside and finding her some clothes. She parrots phrases back at him; her vocabulary growing as she rhymes more words. No good deed goes unpunished and jerks from the street show up at Dante’s door feeling entitled to a piece of this mystery woman. She does not give in to them. She has abilities no one can see, but nonetheless allow her to take care of herself. She has her own power. Dante offers his hand to Veil because, as he explains to her, they have to go—now.
The end of Veil #1 doesn’t answer any questions. It only sets up Veil and Dante’s next adventure, which is sure to be exciting and revealing. Who is Veil? What is her connection to the rats? Where will Dante lead her to avoid fallout from the incident at his apartment? Knowing, the quality of Rucka’s other works, we will learn all that and more in coming issues.
Although, Veil is a departure from what I’ve come to expect from Rucka-penned comics, I do like it when writers take risks. Those risks don’t always pan out. This one, I believe, will work out just fine. It is worth a read for a couple issues at least to see where it goes—as a fairytale or otherwise.
There is portrait of a rat on the inside cover. I love this rat. In fact, the first five pages of Veil showcase Fejzula’s artistic style and approach to this story with atmospheric panels. He shows us specific aspects of the environment and we can draw their own conclusion regarding how those images fit together. I was impressed with the presentation of Veil as she emerges from the subway. A naked woman on the street is an object of the male gaze. Veil is not objectified on the page for the reader due to Fejzula’s respectful decisions on how to show her body. She is through the script. This combination prevents Veil from being solely an object in this tale.
Dark Horse mentions that a variant cover by JH Williams will be available at Emerald City Comicon! I will check that out for sure.
Recommendation: Try this one out for a few issues even if it might not sound like your typical fare. For readers that like Pretty Deadly, Sandman, Fables, or Blue by Elizabeth Genco.