Rat Queens Win the Day: These Ladies Ain't No Skullkickers | Fanboys Anonymous

Rat Queens Win the Day: These Ladies Ain't No Skullkickers

Posted by Unknown Thursday, September 26, 2013
the cover to rat queens issue one featuring the girls in actionCrude, crass, and vulgar. When I had first heard of Rat Queens, I had imagined Skullkickers with chicks. When I went to pick it up my local comic book store, that’s just what the guy behind the counter said as well. This is a sort of half-truth. Both Skullkickers and Rat Queens play off the classic Dungeons and Dragons in great satirical comedy, but in two very different ways. Now, bear in mind we have only just seen the first issue of Rat Queens. While Skullkickers revels in over-the-top machismo and ultra-violent antics, Rat queens, with no shortage of said violence, definitely curves towards a more uncouth and sexual humor. It’s a read best left on a high shelf lest a young individual were to pass by. It’s sure to offend a few people, and kindle the hearts of feminists everywhere.

Rat Queens follows the tale of our all-female gang duly titled the Rat Queens. They are one of many gangs within the Palisade who are wreaking havoc within the city limits and the people are tired of it. Apparently there was a time when these gangs took up arms against monsters and various invading forces that sought to destroy, or otherwise cause problems for the Palisade, but now they have settled down into a raucous life of sin and debauchery. Given the option of banishment or service to the crown, the Rat Queens opt for the quest assigned to them; rid the Hindman Cave of its supposed Goblin population. It’s a simple little ditty and nothing too impressive at this point in time, but it’s got lots of room to grow.
A panel taken from Rat Queens issue 1
Page 5, Panel 1 of Rat Queens Issue #1
Initially I felt the story to be a little redundant. I've read this a hundred times and really, why do I need another fantasy RPG on my bookshelf? That comment aside, I feel that among the many other fantastical tales out there, this book might accomplish a few minor tasks that others don’t. Primarily, I’m really enjoying the comradery among the girls. Betty, Dee, Hannah, and Violet play off each other quite well and I’m looking forward to more of their off kilter conversations in further issues to come. Secondly, within a single issue I already have a pretty firm grasp on the back-stories for two of the four girls and it didn't feel like I was being force fed. That’s a huge accomplishment. It didn't take a monologue or diary entry to do it, just clever conversation and a little intuition. That’s a win for me.

A panel taken from Rat Queens issue one featuring one girl talking provacatively
Page 7, Panel 5 of Rat Queens Issue #1
The creative team behind this book features Kurtis J. Wiebe as our scriptwriter and Roc Upchurch on art. Kurtis is known for his work in Peter Panzerfaust and a big Shuster Award win for his book Green Wake. He has also written for The Intrepids and Debris, two more Image Comics titles. John Upchurch, who goes by the alias Roc, is providing the eye candy for this marvel after making his debut in Image doing the cover art for the series Vescell. More then what Kurtis will be providing us in terms of story, I am quite intent in seeing the continued works of Upchurch in whatever he may do. He has a style that isn't as cookie cutter as most individuals in the industry at this moment and so far I am a big fan of those doe eyes and cute button noses. Roc has been quite open about his work on Rat Queens and you can see more pages in future issues at his blog site here.
A promotional cover done by fiona staples for the premier issue of rat queens
Issue #1 Promotional Cover Done By Fiona Staples

For a damn good time, Rat Queens is a definite suggestion for you pull list. I suspect that not only will we continue to see the same great things that are happening in this first issue in future issues, but also a whole lot more. If you are a fan of wily women and loose lips, this might be the tale for you. If you have ever played D&D with your bros and wondered what it might be like to have a girl at the table, this is definitely the comic for you. If you've ever wondered why the most masculine and chiseled of heroes always hog the spotlight, well women, this could be the story for you too.

Finally, if you manage to snag yourself a copy, as I hear they have sold out, give me a shout and let me know what you think. Which one of the girls do YOU have the biggest crush on?

*update: Looks like this will be on ongoing series. Hurrah!

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