Publisher: BOOM! Studios
Writers: Kurt Sutter, Courtney Alameda
Artist: Hyeonjin Kim, Jean-Paul Csuka (colours)
Release Date: 19th July 2017
From the mind of Sons of Anarchy creator Kurt Sutter comes Sisters of Sorrow, a violent, dramatic tale of revenge and recovery, the first issue of which goes on sale this week from BOOM! Studios. Sutter works alongside novelist Courtney Alameda here as the pair introduce us to a group of women living in The Haven House for Survivors of Domestic Violence in L.A. – women who find themselves adopting a somewhat ‘hands on’ approach to standing up against the injustices that they’ve been subjected to.
This first issue reads like an ‘origin story’ for the group as they find themselves fighting off the aggressive soon-to-be-ex-husband of one of the women at the shelter, killing him in the process. They’re still clearly a long way away from the Uzi-toting vigilante nuns of Jae Lee’s cover, but it’s easy to see that the events of this issue – the final pages in particular – are shoving them forcefully in that direction.
Sutter and Alameda have put together a diverse group in every sense of the word, from ethnicity to body type to outlook and personality, and watching them interact and come together gives this first issue the beating heart it definitely needs. As you’d expect from the creator of Sons of Anarchy, subtlety isn’t exactly the word of the day, but Alameda helps keep things nicely grounded as the pair do their best to establish the personalities of the different characters as they plan and carry out their first act of vigilante vengeance.
Up-and-coming artist Hyeonjin Kim gives the book a snarling, aggressive edge with his scratchy lines and unflinching approach to violence. And, while there are a couple of awkward page layouts and some overall issues with visual pacing, the book still delivers a strong, distinctive style that works hand-in-hand with Sutter and Alameda’s story to give the series its energy and attitude. Jean-Paul Csuka rounds things out nicely with some clean, confident colours that keep things suitably dark and brooding without letting the book ever become murky or dull.
As I mentioned above, this is very much an origin story, so it’s still unclear about just what direction the series is going to take as it unfolds. But, whether Sutter and Alameda are planning to adopt a “villain of the week” approach where the ‘Sisters’ take down a different abusive husband or random woman-hater every issue, or keep to an overarching story about the evolution of the group, this is a strong start to what promises to be an exciting series packed with action, violence and emotion, and you can damn sure count me in for whatever comes next.
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