STAR #3, out this week from Marvel Comics continues the tale of their new villain, only things have taken quite the turn for her. Once she was a plucky reporter, now she’s the enemy of Captain Marvel herself.
Ripley Ryan was once a happy reporter, content to work on fluff pieces about heroes. Now? Now she’s a villain with access to immense levels of power. If she can only learn to control them. That is the crux of this miniseries.
Star is a five-issue miniseries, which means we’re not more than halfway through our plot arc. Thus far, we’ve seen her interact with several heroes and villains alike, all to different ends. Yet none of that could have prepared her for what is about to happen in Star #3.
Star #3 will shake you to your core. It provides a unique perspective on the dynamics between heroes and villains. More importantly, it provides insight into what happens to the civilians unlucky enough to get caught in the crossfire.
It’s something you see in nearly every comic book issue. After all, heroes are usually doing everything they can to save people. But what about those people? The ones that don’t get saved? Or the ones that never would have been in danger in the first place, if not for the hero?
Star #3 lends those people, the unlucky ones, a voice. Sure, most of those characters will not take a dark turn, they’ll never become enemies. Heck, most of them won’t even become named characters. Yet there’s still something to take away from this tale.
Kelly Thompson has created something fascinating here. A fact that become so clear in Star #3, thanks to the panic attacks and flashbacks that Star experienced. There’s something so broken yet so human about the way she behaves. It has suddenly driven home everything she’s gone through.
That makes for one powerful read. Even if you don’t agree with Star’s actions, it’s difficult not to sympathize with her panic and her pain. Something that is likely to get worse before it gets better, considering all of those who are now actively hunting her.
The artwork found inside Star #3 is amazing. It’s gritty, raw, and extremely emotional. It isn’t afraid to show off the good and the bad. That goes for heroes and villains alike. It’s not something you get to see every day, yet it is exactly what this plot demands.
Javier Pina and Filipe Andrade were the lead artists for this issue. If not for them, Star’s pain, fear, and anger would never have been so evident. That they portrayed Star as both strong and capable of panic attacks means so much.
Meanwhile, Jesus Aburtov was responsible for the colors, which are brilliant and bring the artwork to life. Captain Marvel has never looked so vibrant, and yet there’s almost an insidious tone to that, courtesy of Star’s perspective.
Finally, VC’s Clayton Cowles provided the lettering, and they did an excellent job. Their letters lead the reader from panel to panel in such a smooth flow. You almost don’t realize you’re being lead along.
Star #3 was a dramatic and compelling read. That it was able to make Ripley read as being so painfully human, so flawed and so extremely angry, just makes it all the more interesting. This is a perspective fans almost never get to see, and they’re making the most of it.
It’s hard to believe that there are only two issues left in the series. Given how this issue ends though, we can probably guess how Star #4 will begin. With a fight. Or more accurately, with a rematch. Care to guess how that will go?