There was a bit of a surprise in my stack of comics last week. It wasn't something that I thought I would read. In fact, I'm still not sure why
I read it. Maybe it's because the art was pretty. I don't know. But I did read Vixen: Return of the Lion
. And I really
Let's forget that the comic totally ignored Vixen's "power problems" that have consumed a lot of Justice League of America
over the past year. It's better that it did
ignore them. Because instead we got a really interesting story about a character that I've never really known that much about.
Vixen has never been a character on my radar. I never read the Detroit League and only caught her briefly in Suicide Squad. She's always felt kind of tacked on in Justice League of America
. But in Return of the Lion
she felt like a real character. Like someone with a personality, a life, and character
. For the first time the character of Vixen seems a bit more real to me.
I thought that Return of the Lion
did a good job of showing that Vixen isn't really
an African American character (as she often seems portrayed). She's really an African
character. And the comic gives the continent that is all to shamefully ignored by people in the Western World a little bit of the attention that it so richly deserves.
I felt that Vixen's motivations were pretty real in this story. It's your typical comic hero struggle: find the villain responsible for the death of your parent/family member/significant other/best friend. But for some reason it felt a little less cliched to me here. Maybe it's because strongmen like Return of the Lion
's villain are all too real in the world portrayed on the page.
In another common comic convention, the villain (formerly thought to be a normal mortal man) is revealed to have super-powers. Again, I should have expected that. But for some reason I didn't, and I was surprised to see it happen.
I was also pleasantly surprised by the artwork. I've never seen this artist's work before, but I sure hope I see more of his or her work (with a name like "Cafu" it's hard to tell). The characters looked good and the action was really stellar. I was impressed.
Over all, I'm pretty glad I took a chance on Vixen: Return of the Lion
. I don't usually pick up mini-series based on characters I don't know well. Maybe you don't either. But you should give this one a chance. It feels like one of those solid comics that all too often slips through the cracks...