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8-Page Preview Of Mark Millar’s HIT-GIRL On-Line
Kick-Ass, the comic-book tale about so-called “real-life” superheroes by writer Mark Millar and artist John Romita, Jr., has been popular enough to spawn a movie adaptation, a second comic-book series, and now available this week, a spin-off comic-book series, Hit-Girl, featuring Kick-Ass’s extremely young and violent ally in his war on crime. The first issue is available in comic shops today, but we have for you after all of my blah blah here an 8-page preview of Hit-Girl #1, courtesy of the fine folks over at The Hollywood Reporter.
First of all, allow me to begin by saying I very much enjoy Mark Millar’s work. I often feel the need to say this at the beginning of any such discussion, as though the guy needs me to defend him or his stuff from his detractors, some of whom are dear friends of mine. Their criticism is that Millar is pretty exploitative and generally and somewhat cynically uses comics as a springboard into the far more profitable and infinitely more lame field of big-budget action movies. And I would tend to agree. But the fact remains that the guy produces some pretty entertaining and downright ballsy comics with tight plots and good dialogue. So regardless of any post-comics intentions he may have, I still enjoy his work.
But in writing this piece, I’ve come to realize how little I like Hit-Girl as a character, despite the fact that I’m still gonna buy this series. For one thing, she’s kind of a fish-in-a-barrel character. As THR points out, she’s become a break-out character, apparently because we are all like Cameron from Modern Family and find children who swear to be the funniest thing since the banana peel. Not to get on my high horse, but so what. I’ve been swearing like a motherfucker since I was six years old, and trust me, not everybody finds it as cute in real life. So that kind of easy potshot character can bore me pretty quick.
But I think my deeper problem with Hit-Girl is that she acts as Millar’s back-door a lot of the time. Kick-Ass starts as the story of Dave Lizewski, a teenage boy with very real and relatable teenage boy problems. Unable to affect any kind of control or change over his adolescent life, Dave decides to not just shave his head and play his AFI records really loud, but instead to don a mask and try and stop people getting mugged. Millar had built a very realistic world for this realistic character, thereby allowing for a believable dissection of this superhero jones a lot of us seem to have. But then he drops Hit-Girl in, a completely unbelievable little girl who’s never had a Barbie but can field-strip a rifle. When Dave’s back is against the wall, she’s the one who has to come and save his ass each time. It might be fun, but it’s no longer very relatable and I find that to be kind of a drag. Writers are more interesting to me when they overcome challenges in the story organically, not just by dropping a pre-teen killing machine into the mix.
Now that I’ve convinced myself (if not you, dear reader) that Hit-Girl is kinda lame, please enjoy these first eight pages of Hit-Girl #1: