TIGER LAWYER #1
Written by Ryan Ferrier
Art by Matt McCray, Vic Malhotra
This is the first comic I can remember where I have said “What the hell is this?” and meant it in a good way. With a mile wide grin on my face I devoured this tale with the ferocity of a certain lawyer in a courtroom dishing out justice. Tiger Lawyer is equal parts Axe Cop, Law & Order and National Geographic, culminating in the most strangely loveable comic you will ever read. I will admit that after reading the book I had genuine concern for creator Ryan Ferrier’s mental health, but I’m going to toss that aside because I don’t want him to get help: I want more Tiger Lawyer. This issue features two stories in one and readers are tossed head first into the madness of a world where a Tiger Lawyer could exist and I have to say, I like that world. Using a combination of humour, legal drama and even a song (yes, a theme song!) Ferrier keeps the first story light and fresh, setting the tone of this entire series as whimsical fun. He then turns up the drama in the second half, digging into a gritty noir-ish tale with Vic Malhotra creating a world filled with dark undertones and a seedy underbelly that is just waiting for someone to have the stripes to stand up to. I will admit I had serious questions of what a Tiger Lawyer book could be, and this issue smashed every single misconceived thought I had.
On the art side of the coin, Matt McCray handles the first story with ease and precision. He does an excellent job of pencilling Tiger Lawyer as a playful cat on one panel and a vicious feline the very next. What impressed me most, though, was his attention to the detail that the humans in the world aren’t phased at all that there is a walking, talking tiger in the room. This is old news for these people and McCray pencils their expressions toward the bizarre events very well. The second story is pencilled by Vic Malhotra and his skilled hand gives the story a very different tone – not worse, by any means, just different. I have not seen any of Malhotra’s work in the past, but this man could step into any noir book and excel. The stories are separated by pin-ups of Tiger Lawyer by several different artists and I think Ferrier made a wise choice of putting this art in the middle of the book. There are some fantastic pieces of art and they do an excellent job of separating the two stories.
This comic is truly unlike any other and I can’t wait to get my hands on more. ‘Nuff said.