Plume is a book that I hadn’t heard of before seeing its title appear on the list of this week’s books; a chance encounter. It’s a small title, one without even the promotional power of an Image series behind it, crowd sourced and small family funded by Devil’s Due Publishing, and so in reviewing it I should give a synopsis – since unlike all the other superhero titles you wouldn’t have already read one – but given the nature of the story at this stage and the structure of this first issue I’m not sure that I should or even could. What I can say though is this Plume is one of the more pleasant premiere issues that I have read in quite a while and is well worth a look if you are after something nice and outside the norm.
The reason that I can’t accurately convey the story of Plume is twofold. Firstly, this issue serves as something of an origin story: starting in media res, the two heroes standing in a western setting, guns smoking, bodies strewn around them and we flash back from there to where the story began; an Elizabethan setting, an overly mannered manor in which the books feisty female lead is trapped during her teenage years, one she escapes through the help of some magic and a mistake. To say anything more than that would be spoiling the books surprise, in fact saying that much may already have, since the mystery driving the issue is that we don’t know who these people are or where they came from.
The second reason is a stranger one to try and describe. The title, Plume, comes from a quote uttered during that early Western section: ” Revenge is like a plume of black smoke,” it is irritatingly incorporeal. At this stage Plume is perhaps a little too similar in some ways: the issue is a swift read, you swallow it in one small bite and finish far from full, the story slightly too slight to satisfy. The art exaggerates this feeling, its large, flat, single colour painted planes allowing you to read the book at this particularly accelerated pace. It resembles Riley Rossmo in a simplistic sense, the style the same but the feeling behind it far from the same; these figures far more empathetic, far more emotionally accessible.
Although I’m still not really sure what the story of the series will be I know that I will be picking up the rest of the issues released because of these figures and the feelings that they elicit. The characters in Plume are completely charming – and strangely reminiscent of a brother-sister pair that I know in real life – and it is because of this that the book goes by so fast, because I was enjoying the read so much. Time flies when you are having fun, it files when you are among friends; the pacing in Plume is perfect, its the page count I had an issue with, i just wanted to keep on reading and so will you (something that you can do online, the story began as a Webcomic which still runs today). Period Piece? Fairy Tale? Western? Whatever it be K. Lynn’s Plume is absolutely something that I will be picking up each and every issue of.