Review - Shutter #1

"C'mon, Kate! Hold the gun with both hands!"

Adventure is just that: adventure. It takes people to varied locations and offers them varied memories. Sometimes those memories aren't enough to keep someone moving forward in life, even if being extremely skilled at adventuring just isn't enough anymore. Shutter #1 from Image Comics is a book about adventure and leaving behind those memories for a new direction. The issue is written by Joe Keatinge, illustrated by Leila Del Duca, colored by Owen Gieni and lettered by Ed Brisson.

Kate Kristopher is the latest in a long lineage of famous explorers. She spent her youth under the tutelage of her father, who took her on many adventures and voyages where she took in many sights. One her 27th birthday, she decides that adventure isn't quite her cup of tea anymore, despite what appear to be raving fans and tons of accolades for her work. Despite her newfound view of life, Kate still has difficulty avoiding the adventure limelight, with trouble finding her seemingly no matter what.

Kate's introduction is handled very well by Keatinge, who effectively conveys both Kate's lineage and her current choices in life. She grew up with a childhood enthusiasm for life that was quenched by her adventuring, but that enthusiasm tapered off as she grew up. The fact that she is so successful at exploring should mean that she'd love doing it, even though the lifestyle she's living just doesn't do it for her anymore. Keatinge paces the issue very well, moving Kate's life along rather methodically until all of a sudden things get really crazy for her and her life. The center of the story is actually very poignant, offering the reader a story that they can relate to for multiple reasons.

Del Duca's art is solid and a great fit for the script. Kate is detailed in a way that convinces the reader she did grow up as an adventurer. The other settings themselves are perfect for capturing the charm that comes with Kate as an explorer. The opening credits sequence in particular is pretty awesome, offering a rather airy take on the setup for the duration of the issue (and story). Del Duca manages to illustrate a world that feels like the future in some ways, but at the same time also feels like pictures of past cities.

Shutter #1 pulls no punches in throwing readers right into the thick of things. The first 3/4 of the book feels pretty familiar, but there's a pretty hard-left turn mixed in towards the end that really sends the reader careening into new territory. Keatinge deftly handles both Kate as a character and her place in the story. Del Duca's art is evident of great talent and skill that gives the reader some sense of the adventures Kate goes on. Shutter #1 is a strong first issue that is setting up a pretty unique story long term, one that clearly doesn't take any stock in being predictable.

Shutter #1 is available in stores now with interiors below.