cover image Bandette, Volume 1: Presto!

Bandette, Volume 1: Presto!

Paul Tobin and Colleen Coover. Dark Horse, $14.99 (144p) ISBN 978-1-61655-279-4

Acrobat, quick-change artist, and thief: is there anything Bandette can%E2%80%99t do? She certainly has the skill to capture your attention in this gleeful, cheery adventure by married creators Tobin and Coover (Banana Sunday, Gingerbread Girl). Like Raffles or the Saint, Bandette is a thief with a heart of gold, rescuing common folk in distress and liberating stolen works of art (saving a few for her personal museum, of course). Tobin%E2%80%99s characters deftly tread the tightrope between saccharine and caricature, and Coover%E2%80%99s colorful, fluid art gives homage to the European fine-line illustration of Herg%C3%A9, without slavishly copying it. Coover%E2%80%99s gorgeously rendered Paris architecture, lively and energetic figures, and especially the whirling dervish Bandette, are rendered in a soft-toned, impressionistic painting style that immediately differentiates the many characters and highlights the script%E2%80%99s comic timing. A rich treasure trove of backup pieces include short %E2%80%9CUrchin Stories,%E2%80%9D focusing on Bandette%E2%80%99s supporting cast of accomplices and antagonists, and Coover%E2%80%99s step-by-step guide through her art and computer-coloring techniques. This is a wonderful gateway comic for readers of all ages%E2%80%94one of the brightest, and most fun, comics of the year. (Dec.)