Story: David Avallone
Art: Matt Gaudio, Julius Ohta, Pasquale Qualano
Colors: Ellie Wright / Sheelagh D
Letterer: Taylor Esposito
What They Say:
The ultimate conspiracy against America has gone deeper than anyone could have possible imagined. Is there anyone who can uncover the truth in time? Is the end in sight? Is there anyone that can save us? Model Agent Bettie Page is reporting for duty!
Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
The Invasion of the Bettie Snatchers has been a pretty fun arc so far with a good bit of mystery about it and plenty of old school science fiction weirdness. David Avallone has nailed down Betti’s voice for a long time now so it’s fun to see him putting her into more unusual situations and reacting there as she does. This issue has several artists on board to handle the duties and it’s pretty seamless overall so that the blending works and the consistency feels right. There aren’t any jarring moments where it simply shifts to some other style and takes you out of the story. And the cover for this issue… what a cover!
Bettie’s escape from HQ last time around and the subterranean beehive alien complex that was built down there has her on the run. She’s keeping things simple, taking the train back into the city, and hoping to keep a low profile, avoiding her usual haunts by going directly for friends. The problem is that while she broke the connection of her copy before, they’re still in-tune to some degree and the copy with her group of goons are after her on the train. It’s interesting to see a copy of Bettie that’s not “right” in an unfinished way as it’s kind of eerie, almost twins but not quite and you can’t exactly put your finger down on it either. It’s fun watching as Bettie struggles to look at her while trying to keep the Other-Bettie off-balance, pointing out the ways in which the copy hasn’t worked.
The reality is that Other-Bettie does have the upperhand of a gun and goons so they’re working to get her back to the base, though getting off the train is what takes up the bulk of the issue. Bettie’s clever enough to figure out ways to push against that and it leads to some pretty fun action along the way and a chance for her to get a better handle on her enemy. She also begins to understand who they are while discovering more about herself – in that she doesn’t know herself. When she somehow makes a more direct connection with Other-Bettie, it allows her to see into the Hive mind a bit and the species with their escape from a dark and dying world along at a look at their bee-queen. It’s utterly shocking to Other-Bettie – so much so that she makes the claim Bettie isn’t human, and it’s an opportunity that Bettie takes advantage of to get free. Her quick thinking is something that’s always giving her an edge.
Bettie Page has been firing on all cylinders for a while now and this issue is no exception. It’s also a bit of a change from the recent storylines as she’s more out on her own than usual and she’s not quite as filled with quips either, highlighting the seriousness of what she’s facing. This issue puts it in even clearer terms while heightening her fear levels as well because of just how nuts the whole situation is. Avallone’s script keeps things moving with an “on the train” installment while the trio of artists provide for some solid continuity across styles so that it’s a good experience for the reader without anything jarring. And I’ll say it again, what a cover!
Age Rating: 13+
Released By: Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: December 26th, 2019