RAD COMICS: Casanova: Luxuria // Matt Fraction & Gabriel Bá

"As I'm sure none of you have read my work, I decree we'll speak only of The Beatles or eat in silence".   I was flipping through potential purchases at Bergen Street Comics, and it just so happened that these were the first lines I read out of Matt Fraction and Gabriel Bá's 2006 sci-fi secret agent send up, Casanova: Luxuria.   So I bought the damn thing (duh!)

The story centers around Casanova Quinn, freelance thief and bad seed son of E. M. P. I. R. E. (obvo, it's a super sleuth peacekeeping freedom stealing kinda agency thing) Director Supreme Cornelius Quinn.  Casanova's life takes a major turn when his sister, E. M. P. I. R. E. star agent Zephyr Quinn turns up dead during her mission investigating a disturbance in the space time continuum.  After the wake, Cass finds himself in an alternate time line where his sister is the selfish asshole and he has been the goody goody.  Unfortunately for him, this time continuum shift was manufactured by E. M. P. I. R. E.'s enemy, W. A. S. T. E., and Cass is forced to be a double agent.  Not an easy task when you want to stay alive (so you can keep doing drugs and boning broads).

The book, titled Luxuria, collect issues 1-7 and is a complete story.  While it is first and foremost a sci-fi action ordeal, what makes this book so great is the pulpy (Warren Ellis-esque!) dialogue of writer Matt Fraction.  Luxuria never takes itself even remotely seriously, but despite it's dirty tongue and cheek humor, I found myself genuinely caring for the cast and was completely riveted from start to finish.  The art, of course, has almost as much to do my enjoyment as the writing, and Gabrial Bá's clean lines and black and green heavy pallet definitely create the perfect world for the dialogue to live in.

I feel that if I go too much further I'll spoil all the fun, so be sure to pick up the graphic novel.  Expect time travel, sexbots, giant nuclear robots, lots of drugs and a floating brain with pouty lips.  I'm going back to Bergen Street Comics today to see if they have volume 2.

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