The second of the much awaited “Before Watchmen” series has arrived. Silk Spectre #1 hit store shelves after Minutemen #1, a tough act to follow. It’s not fair to compare the two, but everyone knows they will be.
Silk Spectre #1 isn’t about the Sally Jupiter “Silk Spectre”, but instead about her daughter Laurie. A girl from a broken home, pushed by a once vivacious and powerful mother, and now trying to outrun her inherently endless shadow. Sally has what seems to be the best intentions for her daughter, teaching her to be strong, smart, independent, and resourceful. But unfortunately, like many other parents who push their offspring to the limit, the opposite happens, they run. Laurie doesn’t want what her mother is giving, or forcing upon her, she feels like an outsider at school, and is bullied by classmates who know about her mother’s past infidelities. The only difference is, what Laurie thinks she’s running away from, she’s actually on a one way track to becoming what she never wanted, the Silk Spectre.
Amanda Conner draws and co-writes Silk Spectre #1 with Darwyn Cooke, who also did the highly enjoyable Minutemen “Before Watchmen” book. Conner’s art is clean and allows you to see every emotion on each characters face. Panel by panel the story moves, almost like you would see in a storyboard for a movie. One of my favorite parts of the book are the small comically exaggerated thoughts Laurie has. The art’s so good that you actually forget about the decent story it hides beneath it. Not as interesting and raw as Minutemen #1, the Silk Spectre story still has some depth to it. It’s only flaws are clichés of a bullied girl, run into the ground by her mother, and hitting the road with no direction in mind. The book is just the beginning of a 4 part series so I would expect to see Laurie Jupiter‘s crash course on becoming the Silk Spectre real soon.