Written by Viktor Kalvachev and Kosta Yanev
Scripted by Andrew Osborne
Art by Viktor Kalvachev, Toby Cypress, Nathan Fox & Peter Nguyen
Published by Image Comics & EZD Productions
On Sale 8th August
If you’ve been following Blue Estate this far then there’s absolutely no way you’re going to miss this issue, the finale of “Season One.” You will get what you’ve always gotten from this series: action, humour and twisty-turny plotting. From a storytelling point of view this is a very satisfying ending, gathering all the plot strands of the last year-and-a-bit (to the creators’ credit, the delays are referenced here with good humour) and of course some of the most attractive, expressive graphic storytelling in comics today. Villainy is vanquished, justice is served and hints are dropped for the still-unannounced but much hoped-for Season Two.
However BE #12 also features something entirely new to the series: disappointment. Not in the issue as a whole but in one scene that I will discuss after this review for those who wish to avoid spoilers. Suffice it to say for now that it’s this scene alone that keeps Blue Estate #12 from achieving the 10/10 score that the series regularly earns.
Spoilers in 10
SPOILERS START HERE
By the time you read this you will have hopefully read Blue Estate #12 and hopefully have an idea of which scene i’m referring to. It is of course the fate of Vassilisa. In the issue where the good guys are rewarded and evil is punished a character whose only crime per se was to be an ill-tempered prima donna actress is kicked off the movie she’s been filming and consigned to being an unwilling participant in porn. Literally being dragged into a dank room with a filthy mattress and having the door slammed shut behind her. Her new “boss” even quips that the “camera will love you,” because this is apparently a comedy moment!
Bear in mind this is a character who has had a total of one previous appearance in the series and whose character arc can now be described thus: “Is an unpleasant woman. Gets raped for entertainment.” I expect better from the creators of such a quality title as Blue Estate. This is the kind of juvenile and thoughtless misogyny that gives comics a bad name.
To be clear: I AM NOT CALLING THE CREATORS OF BLUE ESTATE MISOGYNISTS. I’m expressing disappointment that such a thoughtlessly misogynist message (“rape=funny if you don’t like the victim”) crept into an otherwise rousing and satisfying finale to one of my all-time favourite comics, one that stars one of my favourite female comics characters.
I feel like I should say something very clever and insightful in closing but I just feel sad.