Tuesday, March 26, 2024

Comics Review: "RED LIGHT #3" - Possession is Nine-Tenths of the Law


STORY: Sarah H. Cho
ART: Priscilla Petraites
COLORS: Miroslav Mrva
LETTERS: Sal Cipriano
COVER: Jeff Dekal
VARIANT COVER ARTISTS: DaNi and Brad Simpson; Chris Ferguson with Priscilla Petraites
32pp, Color, $3.99 U.S. (March 2024)

Rated: “Mature”

Red Light is a four-issue miniseries from writer Sarah H. Cho and artist Priscilla Petraites.  Published by AWA Studios, the series follows a futuristic A.I. sex worker who makes a bid for freedom.  Colorist Miroslav Mrva and letterer Sal Cipriano complete the series' creative team.

Red Light opens in a futuristic Red-Light DistrictLacy is an A.I. sex worker who uses her unusual perceptiveness and intelligence to know what her clients want better than they know themselves.  Lacy lives in a high-tech brothel under the watchful eye of her mysterious owner, Adam, best known as “Mister,” who calls her “Mary” after his late wife.  Also, there is no escape for Mister's A.I. sex workers, but Lacy seeks to change that when she meets a human friend named Natalie.

Red Light #3 opens as Lacy and Natalie are driven to freedom thanks to Mars, a brothel client and Automation's top arms dealer.  Now, Lacy and her young charge have found refuge in Mars' high-tech casino, but has Lacy traded one prison for another?

Meanwhile, Mister is not about to give up his top prize, and he will go to any length to get Lacy back.  He needs some “retriever services,” and he's hired a very dangerous cop to do the retrieving.

THE LOWDOWN:  AWA Studios' marketing began providing me with PDF review copies of their comic book publications since April 2023.  Red Light #3 is one of the latest.

Writer Sarah H. Cho offers a narrative with exposition and dialogue that paints the portrait of a dystopian future from a deeply personal and intimate perspective.  In this third issue, Cho depicts the extent of how hard it is for A.I. to escape their fates and their professions.  Cho reveals that even Lacy and Natalie's refuge is like Mister's brothel for other A.I., a prison that calls itself other things

In this series, artist Priscilla Petraites has balanced the sense of fear and oppression with a sense of grit and determination.  This time, she transports the reader into a futuristic thriller that gets hotter with each page, as the stakes get higher.  There is also a mood in this chapter that I want to describe as being like a dark fairy tale.

Miroslav Mrva's evocative colors capture the neon underground and liquid sky of this world of slavery, subjugation and violence.  Sal Cipriano's letters bring a sense of suspense and mystery to this series.  Red Light continues to be a winning AWA Studios' science fiction series, and I expect it to give us a great ending.

I READS YOU RECOMMENDS:  Fans of futuristic science fiction comic books will want to read Red Light.


Reviewed by Leroy Douresseaux a.k.a. "I Reads You"

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