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Barbarella Vol. #2 #08 Review

4 min read

“The Truth Shall Set Them Free”

Creative Staff:
Story: Sarah Hoyt
Art: Madibek Musabekov
Colors: Ivan Nunes
Letterer: Carlos M. Mangual

What They Say:
As the stakes grow higher, we enter the second half of our first two-parter! Barbarella and Vix find themselves stranded on a world with intriguing connections to the Lady, but overwhelming numbers of opponents to get through if they’re to escape with their skin/fur intact. It’s sci-fi-meets-Mesozoic madness. Or to put it another way, it’s all a bunch of Jurassic (Arthur C.) Lark(e). Come discover the land that time really should have forgotten!

Content: (please note that content portions of a review may contain spoilers):
Good and fun science fiction in comics is hard to find which is why the Barbarella property has been such a big win for me since Dynamite picked up the rights to it. Sarah Hoyt continues to bring to the page here an engaging story that explores a new world but also the familiar concept of love and just how many barriers it can break down when Barbarella is involved. It connects with past works while still feeling connected to the film in its own way. Hoyt is again joined by Madibek Musabekov and it’s great to have their work again as they produce such a drop-dead gorgeous book. With Ivan Nunes coloring, the designs look great for the characters with a kind of presence and sensuality that really works and there’s a good look to the worldbuilding that’s going on here throughout.

With two more issues to go in this run after this issue, things are accelerating nicely but it does take a minor detour here. With Barbarella and her group trying to get to the spaceport, they’re facing a whole lot of locals that are trying to stop her as The Lady is demanding it through her communication system. Barbarella opts to change things up in how to deal with the locals by projecting an image of herself to talk to them about what the rest of the galaxy is like, at least in terms of gender. This is a single-gender species, it’s something that they’re unfamiliar with which is why they’re treating her so differently. Barbarella’s talk is cute and silly in some ways but goes for the basics and yes, some will view it as preachy. But it is exactly the kind of thing Barbarella would say and do to try and change hearts and minds in order to not just accomplish her mission but ensure that she spreads more love and joy into the galaxy.

We do get some fun action as the group makes its way to the spaceport after leaving the locals confused as it’s like a MacGuyver situation at first before they finally get there and find Victoire and Alexis already there with their ship. Which is good as Barbarella lost her ship. They’re all up to date on things but we get a lot of chaos that you’d expect from a rushed spaceport exit and it’s a delight to see George step up along the way in helping them get away. Which gets a good reward in being brought on board too. The scene-stealer continues to be Vix, however, as the expressiveness from Musabekov is fantastic and I love the dialogue that Hoyt has latched onto for its delivery combined with that. There’s a good energy about how this unfolds and sets up for the big finale that’s coming with the next two issues. This is all about getting everything in place for that.

In Summary:
Barbarella really does a great job with what it’s attempting to do here. The character is iconic for a lot of reasons and her performance in the early part here is a big reason why it still connects after so many decades with its openness and reality. Hoyt’s script works to take us across a bit more terrain with a good bit of fun mixed in so that it’s not just constant tension and drama. It’s really fun watching the dynamic between the core group and adding George to the mix as everyone gets their chance to shine and do something as part of the larger effort. Madibek Musabekov has really become one of my favorite artists with this series as everything about it is just gorgeous. There are some great covers with this run and this issue, but the interiors match and outperform them regularly, which is no easy feat. I can’t get enough of their work.

Grade: B+

Age Rating: 15+
Released By: Dynamite Entertainment
Release Date: March 23rd, 2022
MSRP: $3.99