Review - Freelancers #1

Few professions are more fast-paced than and as potentially lucrative as that of a freelancer. No, not the type of freelancer whose job depends on writing and artistic gigs. Those folks are living day to day and fearing a paycheck won't stop. It’s the more exciting version of the role involving car chases, shootouts and fighting that is the subject of Freelancers #1 from BOOM! Studios.

The issue is written by Ian Brill, with art by Joshua Covey, colors by Justin Stewart, Vladimir Popov and Zack Sterling and letters by Pat Brosseau.

Life as an orphan is inordinately difficult. Being raised in a kung fu orphanage makes it slightly easier. Val and Cassie are taking that training and making a go of it in LA as freelance bounty hunters. Their latest target is Lobo Ramirez, a man with a penchant for going fast, baby tigers and machetes. Things are going according to plan, until they don't.

On the cusp of capturing Lobo, the duo manages to lose him, prompting a return home for half a paycheck and even more Ramen. If the issue ended there, it wouldn't be a very exciting series. They're given a second chance after a visit to their agent Patrick Sunnyside and it's with the second chance that they realize something is amiss about their target.

Brill's story is one-part Charlie's Angels and one-part police serial. Val and Cassie have a yin and yang partnership, both of them having an almost automatic link where they know what the other's thinking instinctively. They're vivacious and daredevil characters who are in dire financial straits and are ready to take any job that pays them.

Taking such seemingly low-excitement jobs is a fairly standard storyline, but their background as kung fu orphans could add an interesting twist. Stephanie Rushmore is introduced as a potential antagonist who the main characters have a past with. In fact, the entire dynamic which Val and Cassie operate in is fascinating and allows the comic to not take itself so seriously. There's some humor mixed in with the action.

Covey's art features primarily action panels, but the more mundane (read: plot movement) scenes are equally as potent in moving the story. It's buoyed quite well by the coloring team, who infuses the characters and settings with an almost 80s, neon vibe. It really works to help set the tone of the story as one featuring bounty hunters with a lighter side.

Freelancers #1 is, in a word, fun. It's not exactly the most original concept, but, again, the idea of the two leading ladies as orphans raised in a kung fu orphanage adds in an almost automatic refreshing backstory. Following along with them as they struggle to make ends meet while simultaneously uncovering something so much bigger will make the series worth following.

Freelancers #1 is available now with interiors below.