Review: RAT QUEENS #6

Written by Kurtis Weibe
Art by Roc Upchurch
Published by Image Comics
Release date: May 7, 2014

RatQueens06-CoverAThe girls get laid, men or monsters loom and secrets are revealed as the newest arc of Rat Queens kicks off in this issue. Dungeon masters Kurtis Wiebe and Roc Upchurch have scored a devoted fan base by creating a diverse cast of role playing styled characters, questing with the foul mouths and raunchy humor scores have used while slinging dice. That feeling continues as personal twists are revealed in one of the more mysterious members of the Queens. Plus, no table top gaming experience is necessary to enjoy this series. Rat Queens might be set in the traditional cliches of dice games or MMORPGs, but the heart is the women that are made up of the little bits found in all of us that readers can empathize with.

There have been massive doses of action and mayhem in recent issues, so this one is a nice break, taking the opportunity to reintroduce the personalities of some of the girls. However, the story has not missed a beat and continues straight from the last arc. If readers choose to jump on this time around, they might be a little lost about some of the dynamics between characters. Of course Volume One: Sass and Sorcery can bring you to to speed quickly with lots of humor and blood. This issue also gives the girls a bit of a break when it comes to their adversarial relationship with their hometown, while still making time for a bit of fighting… and mushrooms. Almost every issue comes back to bitty, blond Betty and mushrooms.

Upchurch continues to rock out on the art. The distinctive styles and looks for each person shows a deeper reflection of their personality quirks. After a full volume, Upchurch has almost a pallet of expressions for other different moods of Violet, Hannah, Betty and Dee along with the supporting ensemble. There are plenty of panels that use solid color backgrounds for focus or emphasis. What is impressive, though, is the highly detailed backgrounds that are then given a slight blur making it feel more like a television show than just a comic. Upchurch’s use of perspective has constantly shined in this series, and is clear in the humorous scene where the girls are confronted the mayor about their raucous and destructive behavior with the appendages of local artwork.

Just as life is not divided into “very special episodes” focusing on each character, Wiebe does an excellent job of slowly releasing the tidbits and drama of each character slowly over the series. It’s enough to make you feel for each one and yet vague enough to keep you guessing and wanting to roll the dice to see what happens next. Some of those dramatic reveals for the Queen of quiet, Dee lays ahead in this issue, as well as the fate of a “terrible old hag” who set the girls up in the first arc. And of course, the bigger threat introduced at the end of the first volume grows.
The sex, drugs and foul humor continue for those who are willing to cut loose and rock out.

The Verdict: 8.0/10


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