Review – Casanova Acedia #3 (Image Comics)

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Click to enlarge

Publisher: Image Comics
Writer: Matt Fraction, Michael Chabon
Art: Fabio Moon, Gabriel Ba
Release Date: July 29th, 2015

So for the second week I picked a new title (to me) for review that happens to be an ongoing series. Thankfully, there is no need to have read the previous titles to enjoy this one – you can pick it up with no prior knowledge.

Issue three continues with Quentin Cassidy chasing leads on Amiel Boutiques’ past, having found an old photograph of Boutique meeting a young girl after a bombing gone wrong. The librarian (from issue one) noticed it was being used as a bookmark in a book titled “Casonova,” which seems a little too coincidental. Quentin takes the book from the librarian to examine it and it bursts into flames, naturally, and before you even know it you are sucked right back into the story again.

Matt Fraction is enjoying a bit of a purple patch right now, he’s just closed his run on Hawkeye (which many say has been the best interpretation of the character yet), and his other Image title: Sex Criminals, has just been optioned for TV by Universal. Reading Casanova Acedia you can appreciate why he’s the man of the hour right now. I think he’s probably one of the most economical writers out there, in as much as there is no padding or fudge in his story – every word, every interaction, is relevant to what is going on. There are no space savers in here which makes for an intensive and rich reading experience.

There is a certain fluidity to the story, and you can tell there is something a bit different or special here, but it starts off so slow you are not quite sure why you are attracted to this particular story, and then, without really noticing it, the plot is beginning to move faster. Elements of the story are starting to gel together, a bit like Tectonic Plates moving under and over each other. Where once there was flat land, suddenly there is a mountainous landscape!

All the elements in the previous episodes are starting to link, the street magician, the cops, Quentin and Amiel, and the mysterious girl at the beginning of this issue; but it’s done in such a slight-of-hand way you almost don’t notice it. As with the previous issues (Grey Men in #1, and the Demon in #2) the supernatural aspect is developed further with the introduction of the character Fabula and his brothers, which serves to remind you that although some things are starting to make a little sense in the story, we really still have no idea what is going on.

I love Fabio Moon’s stylistic art in this comic. It’s quite hard to describe, seeming both defined and undefined at the same time. It has the slightly unnerving effect of looking blurry overall, but if you take time to examine the panels then everything is clearly outlined. The drawings brilliantly play with perspective and objects within panels look both in AND out of proportion to each other at the same time, this odd relationship helps emphasise both the supernatural aspects of the story and the underlying theme of Quentin’s (or Casanova’s as I’m sure you know or have guessed) amnesia.

This is a thoroughly enjoyable and intriguing read that promises a lot more twists and turns before we get to the end. I get the feeling that with each passing issue I’ll be getting more and more excited for the arrival of the following one.

Rating: 4/5.

The writer of this piece was: Andrew McGlinn
Andrew Tweets from @Jockdoom.

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