Synopsis: The new Image Comics series Scales & Scoundrels invites readers of all ages to join a group of treasure hunters and warriors as they venture into an ancient labyrinth. But what these characters don’t know if that they’re heading down a path that will take them far beyond that maze, putting the fate of the world in their hands. Written by Sebastian Girner with art by Galaad, Scales & Scoundrels follows Luvander, an orphan “treasure-hunter, adventure-seeker, [and] life-saver.” She’s looking to make a name for herself while getting rich in the process, and she assembles a group of like-minded individuals to brave The Dragon’s Maw with her.
Note: I received an advanced copy of this book from the illustrator in exchange for an honest review. This is no way impacted my thoughts.
Review (Volume 1): 4/5
Honestly, the entirety of this review should just be me shouting about dragons. Because guess what. IN THIS BOOK THERE ARE DRAGONS. DRAGONS disguised as PEOPLE, to be more precise.
Me (in an Aziz Ansari voice): THAT’SAMAZINGTHAT’SAMAZINGTHAT’SAMAZINGTHAT’SAMAZING!!!!!!!
Yes, my love for Aziz Ansari might be getting out of hand. So what. We don’t need to talk about that, and certainly no intervention is necessary, and if it WERE necessary it probably should have taken place in August, when I binge watched Master of None AND rewatched every single one of his comedy specials AND reread his book in audio form AND watched episodes of Parks and Rec (but that just happens every month).
What I’m saying is you would have noticed then, if you CARED ABOUT ME.
But back to this amazing book. Here is a list of really cool things about it (it’s cool enough to warrant the writing of a list!!!!)
I literally just love a girl protagonist all the time!!! But also BONUS love here because it feels really unique, and therefore extra awesome, to have a female hero in a fantasy graphic novel (especially one that, as I may or may not have mentioned in the past, HAS DRAGONS IN IT).
COOL GIRL PROTAGONIST!!!!!
Yes, she is not only a girl (cool) but she is also, in addition to the cool status granted to her by being a girl in a fantasy graphic novel, COOL HERSELF. And badass. And does a lot of punching. I really love a fight-y protagonist. Yay violence!!!!!!!!
It is quite sad that I am surprised to find diversity in any book, but I was surprised to find diversity in this book. But it’s there!!!! And that is quite a good thing. (Nobody ever thinks to put diverse characters in graphic novels. Especially medieval-y ones.)
DARE I SAY…HUMOROUS
I do not think books are funny ever, because humor is not just saying “this character laughed” and hoping your audience assumes that something amusing occurred. But this book is…surprisingly funny?? Literally all of these positives are me being like, DIDN’T EXPECT THAT!!! My expectations were not low, but apparently they were very restrictive. Huh. Whatever. This was amusing. Enough said.
OH MY GOD THE ART
THE ART IS SO GORGEOUS. UNBELIEVABLY BEAUTIFUL, ACTUALLY. There are certain panels that just made me turn into a heart-eyes emoji. Like the Gushers commercials from the early 2000s that depict kids eating Gushers and turning into grape-headed monsters. Except with beautiful drawings of sunsets over medieval-looking towns instead of Gushers and an emoticon instead of a horrifying 3D animated fruit. But seriously like…just look at the featured image of this post. Beautiful. I have a lovey emoji for a head again just thinking about it.
In a surprisingly pleasant turn of events, I only have lil complaints. What I’m reviewing here is only a volume (I’ve read two but this is mostly a review of the first) of what will be a larger graphic novel. So it’s very short. Impossible to realllyyyyyy fall in love with ya know???
And it felt a little clichéd at points. Some of the dialogue was a little false. But these are things I kindasorta expect with the beginnings of series like this, and overall it was still THE FUNNEST.
Dragonsdragonsdragonsdragonsdragons. Read this!!!