Review: Starlight #1

So uh, it’s been a while since I’ve written about anything geeky, eh? Well, blame that on a nearly year-long break from actually reading comics. I think a little bit of depression mingled with a need to keep up with course reading really stymied me.

But hey! Course is over, I’m feeling pretty good, and one of my friends has sent me a few comics to check out! And I thought this is a great opportunity to start writing about comics again!

James gave me a copy of Starlight #1, written by Mark Millar and art by Goran Parlov, so to dip my toes back into the reviewing world, here are my thoughts on it.

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To be honest, I was a little unsure whether or not I’d enjoy Starlight, Millar isn’t one of my favourite authors and he’s not exactly known for writing the kind of thing I like best. However, I was pleasantly surprised by Starlight #1! I thought it was an interesting take on a relatively common trope in SFF and it had a real depth of emotion.

Starlight #1 introduces us to Duke, who once was a swashbuckling hero, fighting aliens and having statues built of him. Now, he’s a grieving widower who no one takes seriously – not even his sons.

The comic opens with a flashback to Duke’s previous life, with obligatory super sexy alien queen giving him a medal. This didn’t really hook me into the comic, if I’m honest. I like space, I like heroes, I even like space queens, but this seemed like a tired idea with typical cheesecake art. Seriously? This alien queen is a white humanoid in high heels, wearing a bikini and a huge butt apron?

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Luckily, we skip pretty quickly to current Duke. Where the space angle didn’t grab me, the day-to-day life of Duke did. Parlov’s art will probably never be my favourite, but I think he does great work with the humdrum and mundane world. Ive Svorcina’s muted colour palette also helps create a great atmosphere, especially in contrast to the brighter flashbacks.

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As we move through the issue, we begin to understand the lonely, isolated world Duke lives in. The callous attitudes of his sons, the derision from his local community, the scene of the set dinner table… Man, Millar and Parlov really inject emotion into this. Duke is deeply missing his wife and trying to reach out to his sons, trying to live a life with some pretty serious holes in. I’m actually very impressed with how well Millar created this emotional response without going too far – we have real pain, instead of overwrought manpain.

The issue ends with a space ship appearing Duke’s yard – setting us up for the adventure to come.

Overall, I did enjoy Starlight #1! It had emotional depth and the premise is more interesting than a straight earthling hero saves universe (although natch, Duke is a [probably] straight white man and I don’t think I spotted any characters of colour, even in the backgrounds). Parlov’s art is acceptable, although his women are sometimes too cheesecake-y for my liking. I found the domestic aspects a lot more interesting than the space stuff, and since that seems to be where the story is headed, I don’t think getting the rest of Starlight’s six issue run is a priority for me – but when I do have some spare cash, I would be interested in seeing where this goes.

If you like numerical reviews, I’d give this 7.5/10.

Have you read Starlight? What did you think?

Thanks to James for sending me this! I’d never have picked it up myself, but I’m glad I read it!

A pleasurable miscellany…

So I fairly regularly copy my photos from my phone to my computer, as I’m sure everyone does. A couple of days ago, I copied over the latest batch and took the time to go through ALL the photos I’ve transferred. Aside from constantly hitting CTRL+. I realised I have some really lovely photos!

I don’t really have any reason to share them, but I like them and instead of letting them hide away on my hard-drive, I thought you might like to see them too!

They’re not in any particular order, just one that I thought went nicely. I’m also the very laziest about photo-editing – unless it’s Instagram, I ain’t doing a thing with them. So these are just no-filter, raw shots.

Er, please also excuse the sheer bloody number of flowers and overuse of the words beautiful, wonderful and lovely.

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Thrunton Woods on a winter evening! Love the structure of the bare trees and the delicate colour of the sky.

Cresswell Beach on a beautiful sunny evening. Pretty sure these big blocks were anti-tank structures from WWII. There're currently covered by the shifting sands!

Cresswell Beach on a beautiful sunny evening. Pretty sure these big blocks were anti-tank structures from WWII. There’re currently covered by the shifting sands!

Mum at the top of the Cascade at Chatsworth House. Love the silhouette she makes!

Mum at the top of the Cascade at Chatsworth House. Love the silhouette she makes! And if you were wondering about the view from the bottom…

Sunlight through a lovely willow in Hyde Park (er, I think!).

Sunlight through a lovely willow in Hyde Park (er, I think!).

...I have no idea what these pretty frothy pink flowers are called! But you can find them at RHS Harlow Carr.

…I have no idea what these pretty frothy pink flowers are called! But you can find them at RHS Harlow Carr.

A passion flower, filling me with passion for the beauty of nature. I think this gorgeous specimen was in one of the conservatories at Chatsworth.

A passion flower, filling me with passion for the beauty of nature. I think this gorgeous specimen was in one of the conservatories at Chatsworth.

I took SO MANY photos of this blue sea holly at Mindrum Gardens, but can you blame me? So fantastic!

I took SO MANY photos of this blue sea holly at Mindrum Gardens, but can you blame me? So fantastic!

I know it's a bit overexposed, but this photo has me so excited to go exploring sunny summery gardens...

I know it’s a bit overexposed, but this photo has me so excited to go exploring sunny summery gardens…

I suspect you might be able to guess how many photos I indulged in at the Orchid Exhibition when we visited it at Kew Gardens, but I won't bombard you!

I suspect you might be able to guess how many photos I indulged in at the Orchid Exhibition when we visited it at Kew Gardens, but I won’t bombard you!

Try and tell me the light shining through this snakeshead fritillary isn't just bloomin' marvelous. Go on! I saw this one at Wallington Hall.

Try and tell me the light shining through this snakeshead fritillary isn’t just bloomin’ marvelous. Go on! I saw this one at Wallington Hall.

Speaking on Wallington Hall, here's the Edwardian conservatory, which is part of the frankly amazing walled garden.

Also to be found at Wallington Hall, here’s the Edwardian conservatory, which is part of the frankly amazing walled garden.

Apparently European robins aren't as friendly as their British siblings. I'm glad we have such a trusting bunch! This one said hello at Port Meirion, Wales.

Apparently European robins aren’t as friendly as their British siblings. I’m glad we have such a trusting bunch! This one said hello at Port Meirion, Wales.

I have to stare at a stuffed European Eagle Owl at work, but I much preferred this beautiful creature at Linton Zoo!

I have to stare at a stuffed European Eagle Owl at work, but I much preferred this beautiful creature at Linton Zoo!

She's not a great one for sitting for portraits, is our Star, but damn she's beautiful when she does!

She’s not a great one for sitting for portraits, is our Star, but damn she’s beautiful when she does!

You're much more likely to get an action shot of her! Here she is with Mum, playing in Whitby harbour.

You’re much more likely to get an action shot of her! Here she is with Mum, playing in Whitby harbour.

This handsome fellow had quite a lot to say to Mum, alongside the river in Ely.

This handsome fellow had quite a lot to say to Mum, alongside the river in Ely.

Speaking of handsome! My big brother, sitting in the sunshine.

Speaking of handsome! My big brother, sitting in the sunshine.

Mum enjoying a spot of afternoon tea at The Old Dairy in Ford, Northumberland.

Mum enjoying a spot of afternoon tea at The Old Dairy in Ford, Northumberland.

Mum, relaxing beside some  prehistoric cup and ring carvings at Roughting Linn. It's a wonderful place to visit, if you ever get the chance!

Mum, relaxing beside some prehistoric cup and ring carvings at Roughting Linn. It’s a wonderful place to visit, if you ever get the chance!

And that’s it! I hope you liked some of these photos, and the break from stock pictures from Asos, lol.

Do you find yourself meandering through your photo archives? What are some of your favourites?