Thank God for Laura Callaghan! In an illustrated world saturated with images of pretty girls sweetly baking cupcakes, making daisy crowns and chasing after boys, she injects a much-needed dose of the sinister femme fatale. Her characters have undercuts and piercings instead of being clad head to toe in lace, they read lesbian magazines instead of Vogue and they wear vials of their lovers’ blood round their necks. What more could you want from a role model?
First Date is one of her recent comics and it takes the coolly disinterested vamp who has cropped up elsewhere in her work, and puts her slap bang in the limelight. The comic sees chic protagonist Mara go on a disastrous date with a clean cut, non-smoking vegan man who continues to belittle her all the way through his power brunch, only for Mara to wreak what might be the most stylish revenge I can imagine with when she takes him home. Laura’s illustrations are brilliantly concise, and she uses comic framing devices to masterful effect, creating suspense and humour to rival a feature length film noir piece in just four pages and four colours.
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